Daluz calls Rama toxic

CALL FOR OUSTER. After he announced his plans for next year’s midterm elections, Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama (above) has been described as “toxic” by Jose Daluz III, who also calls for his ouster.
CALL FOR OUSTER. After he announced his plans for next year’s midterm elections, Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama (above) has been described as “toxic” by Jose Daluz III, who also calls for his ouster. MICHAEL RAMA FB PAGE

CEBU City Mayor Michael Rama has become “toxic” for Cebu City.

This was how Metropolitan Cebu Water District (MCWD) chairman Jose Daluz III described Rama after the mayor divulged his plans, including his lineup, for the 2025 midterm elections.

Daluz, in a statement on Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2024, said the opposition must unite to remove Rama from his position as local chief executive of Cebu City.

“The opposition against the dancing and singing mayor of ‘Singapoor-like’ Melbourne features must unite to remove toxic Mike,” he said.

Daluz said there are other leaders in Cebu who can better lead the city.

“Save Cebu against toxic Mike,” Daluz said.

He said the mayor has been making enemies, and cited the latter’s rift with the Cebu Port Authority (CPA) over the Compania Maritima property, as well as with the MCWD after Rama ordered the water district to stop all its excavations in the city.

He said Rama also created bad blood with local government units (LGUs) in Cebu Province when the mayor insisted on holding the Sinulog Festival at the South Road Properties in the last two years.

“He has been creating a lot of enemies, to the governor, to the CPA, and to the MCWD. Cebu City’s relationship to other LGUs is no longer healthy. I feel that,” Daluz said.

“I think he needs to retire,” he added.

SunStar Cebu tried to get Rama’s reaction to Daluz’s call for his removal, but the mayor had not replied as of press time.

Last Saturday, Feb. 17, Rama announced that Vice Mayor Raymond Alvin Garcia would still be his running mate next year. He also disclosed on Monday, Feb. 19, the list of possible candidates who would be joining his slate.


Eleven are local legislators who were part of Team Barug’s lineup during the May 2022 elections.

They are City Councilors Pastor Alcover, Noel Wenceslao, Edgardo “Jaypee” Labella II and Jerry Guardo from the north district; and City Councilors Jocelyn Pesquera, Donaldo “Dondon” Hontiveros, Rey Gealon, Phillip Zafra, Renato Osmeña, James Anthony Cuenco and Francis Esparis from the south district.

Rama also included City Councilor Nestor Archival from the north district and ex-officio councilor Kasambagan Barangay Captain and Association of Barangay Councils president Franklyn Ong, as well as former Sangguniang Kabataaan (SK) president Jessica Resch.

He also said he would support North District Rep. Rachel Marguerite “Cutie” del Mar.

Archival, Ong and del Mar are members of the opposition Bando Osmeña-Pundok Kauswagan, which is led by former mayor Tomas Osmeña.


Rama also mentioned some new names who would be joining him, including Sambag I Barangay Captain Aileen Guardo, Cebu City Medical Center Director Peter Mancao, former Calape, Bohol mayor Ernest Herrera, Cebu City United Vendors Association Inc. president Maria Pino, and lawyer Melvin Legazpi for the north district; and his son Mikel for the south district.

He said South District Rep. Edu Rama would be running for reelection under his team.

Rama said City Councilor Joel Garganera is not on the list because the latter is on his last term.

The City Council is composed of 18 councilors, with 16 elected from the two districts and two elected from the ranks of barangay captains and the SK.

Daluz and Rama have been bickering since May 2023 after Rama dismissed Daluz as chairman of the MCWD board of directors.

Last Oct. 31, Rama appointed Melquiades Feliciano, Aristotle Batuhan and Nelson Yuvallos to replace Daluz and MCWD board members Miguelito Pato and Jodelyn May Seno.

Daluz’s Panaghiusa, Rama’s Partido Barug, and Vice Mayor Garcia’s Kugi Uswag Sugbo joined forces during the May 2022 elections.


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