Gwen pulls in 27 of 51 mayors

CEBU. What did Cebu governor-elect Gwendolyn Garcia (middle) say to Cebu first district congressman-elect Eduardo Gullas (left), or other way around, to elicit laughter from his grandson, Talisay City mayor-elect Samsam Gullas? The Gullases, who ran under the Nacionalista Party in the May 13, 2019 elections, swapped positions. (SunStar/Amper Campana)

WHEN she assumes the governorship at noon of June 30, Rep. Gwendolyn Garcia will not only need the support of the majority of the Provincial Board (PB), but also the alliance of incoming mayors and vice mayors to push her programs.

Based on the final official tally of the Commission on Elections, incoming mayors and vice mayors from at least 27 out of 51 mayors in Cebu Province are allies of the governor-elect.

Garcia banners One Cebu and the ruling Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban).

The Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC), on the other hand, endorsed incumbent Vice Gov. Agnes Magpale as its gubernatorial candidate.

Last year, PDP-Laban forged an alliance with the Garcia-led One Cebu party, Lakas Christian-Muslim Democrats (Lakas CMD), Nacionalista Party (NP), and National Unity Party (NUP).

What does this mean for Garcia’s governorship?

“A stronger mandate and a more united province, poised to again make Cebu number one,” Garcia told SunStar Cebu in a text message on Sunday, May 19.

1st District

In the first district, except for reelected Minglanilla town vice mayor Loben Geonzon of the NPC, all winning candidates are from NP.

This includes TalIsay City mayor-elect and incumbent Rep. Gerard Anthony “Samsam” Gullas (Cebu, 1st) and his running mate, reelectionist Vice Mayor Alan Bucao, and reelectionist Minglanilla Mayor Elanito Peña.

Also included are City of Naga vice mayor-elect and incumbent Mayor Kristine Vanessa Chiong, and her father, incoming mayor Valdemar Chiong.

In neighboring San Fernando town, Mayor Lakambini Reluya won her reelection bid, while her son and running mate, Ricci, was elected vice mayor.

In Carcar City, Association of Barangay Councils (ABC) president Mercedita Apura was elected mayor, while her husband and running mate, incumbent Mayor Nicepuro won as vice mayor.

In Sibonga, the tandem of Lionel Bacaltos for mayor and Mariano Laude for vice mayor made it.

2nd District

NPC candidates in the second district won over Garcia’s allies.

PDP-Laban candidates who emerged victorious were mayor-elect and incumbent Vice Mayors Allan Sesaldo (Argao) and Jeffrey Belciña (Dalaguete), and incoming Dalaguete vice mayor William Lagahid.

NPC victors, on the other hand, include Jessa Mier (Argao vice mayor-elect), Michael Sestoso (reelected Alcoy mayor), Jimmy Abajon (incoming Alcoy vice mayor), Merlou Derama (reelected Boljoon mayor), Ervin Villanueva (reelected Boljoon vice mayor), Jun Tumulak (reelected Oslob mayor), Christopher Amit (Oslob vice mayor- elect), Emerito Calderon (reelected Samboan mayor), Emerito Calderon Jr. (reelected Samboan vice mayor), Monic Buscato (incoming Santander mayor) and Marilyn Wenceslso (Santander vice mayor-elect and incumbent mayor).

3rd District

In the third district, which the Garcias have been representing in the House for two decades, majority of the incoming top town and city officials are allied with PDP-Laban and One Cebu.

They include Garcia’s younger brother, reelectionist Barili Mayor Marlon Garcia, and Aloguinsan reelectionist Mayor Cesare Ignatius Moreno, and his sister vice mayor-elect Raisa.

PB Member Alex Binghay who was elected town mayor, while his son and running mate, Alfie, won as vice mayor.

Pinamungahan Mayor Glenn Baricuatro got a reelection; his running mate Richard Carillo was elected vice mayor.

In Asturias, Mayor Anto Pintor was reelected, while his running mate Rene Yaras won the vice mayoral race.

The only NPC bets to make it in the third district were Barili vice mayor-elect Julieto Flores, and brothers Danilo (incumbent vice mayor) and Democrito Diamante (incumbent mayor) who won their mayoralty and vice mayoralty races in Tuburan town.

In Toledo City, independent candidates Joie Perales and Jake Sigue were elected mayor and vice mayor.

4th District

In the fourth, Garcia’s allies with NUP from seven out of nine LGUs won in the midterm polls.

They include brothers Rex (incumbent mayor) and Raul Gerona (incumbent vice mayor) of Tabuelan town also won in the vice mayoralty and mayoral races.

Also included are Benjur Mondigo (reelectionist Medellin mayor), Juan Alfonso Lim (Medellin vice mayor-elect), Alfonso Pestolante (reelected San Remigio vice mayor), Sun Shimura (Daanbantayan mayor-elect and incumbent fourth district PB member), Zigfred Duterte (reelectionist Tabogon mayor), Leonardo Arpon (reelectionist Tabogon vice mayor) and Ithamar Espinosa (Santa Fe mayor-elect and incumbent vice mayor).

The father-and-son tandem of incumbent Madridejos vice mayor Salvador dela Fuente and incumbent mayor Jay River, won in the mayoral and vice mayoralty race, are also allies of the governor- elect.

Meanwhile, NPC bets that made it in the fourth district include Bogo City Mayor Carlo and his sister, Vice Mayor Mayel who won their reelection bid, and reelectionist San Remigio Mayor Mariano Martinez.

Also included are Daanbantayan vice mayor-elect Gilbert Arrabis Jr., Santa Fe vice mayor-elect Naomi Espinosa and reelectionist Bantayan Mayor Art Despi.

Independent candidate Antonio Montemar was elected Bantayan vice mayor.

5th District

In the fifth district, the Durano-led Barug Alang sa Kauswagan ug Demokrasya party remained strong, with its candidates winning in nine out of 11 LGUs.

The only PDP-Laban and One Cebu candidates that won in the electoral race were reelectionist Liloan Mayor Christina Frasco and her running mate, incumbent Vice Mayor Thelma Jordan. Frasco is the daughter of governor-elect Garcia.

Other PDP-Laban victors include Borbon reelectionists Mayor Noel Dotillos and Vice Mayor Roy Melgo.

Meanwhile, the father-and-son tandem of reelectionists Danao City Mayor Ramon “Nito” Durano III and Vice Mayor Thomas Mark “Mix”, were able to secure their posts after defeating PDP- Laban bets in the electoral race.

Other Bakud contenders that won include Sogod incumbent mayor Moonyen Durano-Streegan who won the vice mayoralty race, while her husband, incumbent vice mayor Richard, was elected mayor.

In Poro, the uncle-and-nephew tandem of incumbent mayor Luciano Rama Jr. and Edgar, emerged victorious after they won the vice mayoralty and mayoral races.

The Arquillano brothers of Bakud party also won the top posts in the northern town of San Francisco based on final and official results.

Incumbent vice mayor Alfredo “Al” Arquillano Jr. won the mayoral race, while his younger brother, incumbent mayor Al, won the vice mayoralty seat.

Other winning Bakud bets include Froilan Quiño (Compostela mayor-elect and incumbent ABC president), Josephine Abing (reelectionist Compostela vice mayor), Irish Gestopa (Catmon mayor-elect and incumbent vice mayor), Earl Tidy Oyas (Catmon vice mayor-elect and incumbent PB ex-officio member), Carlo Villamor (Carmen mayor-elect), Al Damiles (Carmen vice mayor- elect), Greman Solante (Tudela mayor-elect and incumbent vice mayor), Erwin Yu (Tudela vice mayor-elect and incumbent mayor), Manuel Santiago (Pilar mayor-elect) and Antonio Ceballos (Pilar vice mayor-elect).

6th District

But PDP-Laban allies were able to sweep the mayoral and vice mayoralty races in the sixth district.

In Consolacion, mother-and-son incumbent town Mayor Teresa Alegado and incumbent councilor Joannes, won their respective bids as vice mayor and mayor after running unopposed.

In Cordova, Mayor Mary Therese Sitoy-Cho succeeded in securing a reelection, while her cousin and running mate, Ximgil Dino Sitoy won the vice mayoralty race.

In Mandaue City, incumbent sixth district Rep. Jonas Cortes won the mayoral race, while his running mate, incumbent sixth district PB member Glenn Bercede won his bid for vice mayor.

7th District

But in the seventh district, NPC bets gave a strong fight as shown in the results of the May 13 elections.

This include Dean Singco (reelectionist Ginatilan mayor), Joel Gornez (reelectionist Ginatilan vice mayor), Verna Magallon (reelectionist Alegria mayor), Gilberto Magallon (Alegria vice mayor- elect), Paz Rozgoni (Moalboal mayor-elect and incumbent vice mayor), Inocentes Cabaron (Moalboal vice mayor-elect and incumbent mayor), Fructuoso Caballero (Badian vice mayor-elect), Efren Guntrano Gica (reelectionist Dumanjug mayor), Erwin Gica (Dumanjug vice mayor-elect), Terence Blanco (Ronda mayor-elect) and Rocky Gabatan (Ronda vice mayor-elect and incumbent acting mayor).

In Malabuyoc, Mayor Lito Narciso Creus, and his son and running mate, Vice Mayor Lito Narciso III, who were both PDP-Laban candidates were able to secure their reelection.

Other PDP-Laban victors include Alcantara mayor- elect and incumbent vice mayor Fritz Lastimoso and his running mate, vice mayor-elect Feliciano Ferraren.

Badian Mayor Carmencita Lumain, who was originally with NPC before she jumped ship and joined One Cebu last March, won her reelection bid after running unopposed. (RTF)


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