Who’s afraid of Serge Osmeña? I am, says UNA’s Tiangco


There’s the PNoy (President Benigno Aquino III) “X factor” and then there’s the “Serge factor.”

That’s Sen. Serge Osmeña, whose quiet presence energizes the campaign of some candidates on the administration’s Team PNoy ticket, and gives the campaign manager of the opposition United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) goose bumps.

Navotas Rep. Toby Tiangco said he got word that Osmeña, a veteran political campaigner, was working as a “campaign consultant” to select candidates on the administration team, among them Mary Grace Poe.

And that Osmeña is said to be reporting “only” to President Aquino has reminded Tiangco of the 2007 senatorial election, during which the senator served as a strategic planner for the Genuine Opposition (GO).

That’s when Tiangco said he saw firsthand the political savvy of Osmeña, the senator’s strengths when it came to reading electoral polls and actually delivering results.

“I don’t want to take anything away from Senator (Franklin) Drilon but you can quote me on this—Serge, I mean, he is what makes my job difficult,” Tiangco told the Inquirer in an interview.

“I don’t know how you would say it but I’m more concerned about Serge than Drilon,” Tiangco said.

‘Not us’

Don’t look at Malacañang, it has nothing to do with Osmeña’s sideline, Palace officials say.

Strategic Communication Secretary Ricky Carandang said he believed a number of administration candidates had turned to Osmeña for campaign advice. That’s not surprising.

“But any arrangements they have with him are their own and are not [made] by the Palace or the campaign,” Carandang said.

Officials handling Team PNoy’s campaign know nothing either. But a Liberal Party member said he had heard from party insiders that Osmeña is helping Poe, Ramon Magsaysay Jr. and Risa Hontiveros, but that’s all.

Marikina Rep. Federico Romero Quimbo, Team PNoy spokesperson, declined to comment when told that Tiangco finds Osmeña heavier than Drilon.

Osmeña himself said: “Toby is being overly kind and his opinion of me is exaggerated. I am not involved with Team PNoy. I have been advising a handful of candidates who asked for advice. My role is minimal in this campaign.”

But Tiangco can’t sit tight.


Though admittedly facing a campaign heavyweight in Drilon, his counterpart on Team PNoy, Tiangco said he was “wary” of what he called the “Serge factor.”

He said it had to do mainly with the senator’s “scientific way of looking at surveys, learning the political demand, delivering the message to the people.”

“He knows his politics,” Tiangco, 45, said, recalling the time when he was a volunteer in the GO senatorial campaign and observing how Osmeña worked.

The Osmeña legend is known to a key member of Team PNoy’s campaign. Speaking on condition of anonymity, the administration insider said, “I hear his name but I have never seen him attend meetings.”

“I heard he is helping three candidates and his strength is with demographics and surveys,” the insider said.

Poe yesterday admitted being helped by Osmeña but said she was unsure if the senator was doing it “as a member of any particular coalition.”

“Yes, he is [helping me],” she said in a text message. “He is a great mentor and adviser. So glad and thankful he is helping me out. Plus, he’s kind and generous and helps neophytes like me.”

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  • Noel

    Serge doesn’t give advice and help a politician without a fee.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/ERCCN5ANNNF7BEBFMYXR6ALGRU Dan

      i agree, no such thing as free in this world

  • Guest

    I believe that Serge is one of the best campaign consultants.

    Serge launched his senatorial career on the strength of nothing but a movie. A movie made for him by ABS-CBN in 1995 called Eskapo. A movie starred by no less than Boyet de Leon and Richard Gomez. A meaningless movie full of imagination but lacking in historical accuracy. A movie that fooled most of the masses but got Serge into the senate. That’s how ABS-CBN and the Lopezes make or break political careers. That’s how stupid and ignorant our voters are.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/ERCCN5ANNNF7BEBFMYXR6ALGRU Dan

      Youre such an edyot, motherf*cker

      • Guest

        Youre right. i f*cked your mother. she taste no good. but still you came out.

      • drew_casta

        Politics aside, you must be Anakin Skywalker. Makes sense. :)

  • Dy Pailad

    Adopt nyo agad si Serge, common campaigner.

  • Garibaldi_II

    Good move Ms Poe. I mentioned earlier that you must replace your adviser to improve your chances of winning. Mr. Osmena can cross the river with you than it is your previous strategist. But there’s no such thing as a free lunch. He needs your support if you win. Read him well; he’s silent yet deep. He’s gathering support to oust the clever monkey in the Senate.  

  • indiosbravos2002

    First advice by OSMENA to Poe… Do not get involved with Trapos este UNA. If they come near you, RUN.
    Second advice… send only proxies to their rallies. The more ridiculous (like a has been cousin), the better. If they dont get your message, they just cnfirmed that they are thickfaced or pretty stupid like Tiangco.

    • regd


  • brunogiordano

    “Who’s afraid of Serge Osmeña? I am, says UNA’s Tiangco”

    TAKOT pala si TIANGCO kay SERGE.

    Ayos talo na ang UNA.

    • Noel

       Tawag ni Tiangco sa kanya:  Sarge.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_W7TPARCYJFCSA3PBQAM3MVZO3E kurakut

    joke: toby says, ang guapo kasi ni serge eh. ang linis at makinis, ang buhok diyos ko! lumalabas tuloy ang aking pagkabakla kahit brusko image ang aking pinaparating. bwisit na UNA to, dapat sa LP ako. hehehe

  • El_Gran_Capitan

    Lalo na naman kinabahan ang UNA ngayon inilalabas na ng Team PNoy ang mga alas

  • regd

    Hehehehe, Naloko na, lalong tagilid ang bading na alyansang ito.

  • speedstream2

    If only our legislators were as savvy with their job for which taxpayers pay millions through the nose, we’d have nothing to fear and everything to look forward to with hope and confidence. As things stand, there’s much to be desired and we can only grit our collective teeth in frustration. For instance, where’s the FOI bill?

  • Labandera1

    Beware of Tiangco ang drug addict na baklang aso………

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_3UAABFPUE5ZKBXOAGLWL6POGWU joel genese

    All for politics. All for power. Gawin lahat para sa pwesto. Ang gusto lang ni Tiangco ay magmukhang underdog siya pati na ang kanilang coalition. Kadalasan, mas gusto ng mga pilipino ang mga underdog.Strategy nila yan para magmukhang walang kalaban laban.

  • redsnow

    Hala noh  bakla pala si Toby Tiangco kaya pala lagi yan sa mga gay bar … Uy Totoby mahiya ka naman bakla !!! baka frend mo si Pinky at si Chizza

  • virgoyap

    So Team P-Noy has Serge Osmena how about UNA have you any expert political strategist? Toby Tiangco? Blah!!!

  • Rolly257

    UNA sa kankungan…diyan kayo dadamputin.

  • comeandgo

    That’s where the three kings (binay, erap and enrile) made mistake by hiring this inexperienced Toby Tiangco as their campaign manager/strategist. Where was he during the Corona impeachment trial? In one of the interviews of Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago, she said that, judging by his hair, Tiangco is an “iconoclast.” Asked to define an iconoclast, she said an iconoclast is “a person who goes around in a sacred temple…smashing false idols.’ NangungUNA sa survey ang Team PNoy.

  • where_I_stand

    Toby Tiangco’s wariness stems from his first-hand experience of Osmena’s political savvy as election’s “magician”. When it comes to political magical prowess, the natural course of the selection process of the senators is at peril.

  • richard ortega

    toby humingi ka na ba ng pondo kay thief justice? sana matuto na ang mga tao sa pagpili ng kandidato. sa class A,B,C malabo na ang UNA mga maralita lang ang kaya nyong lokohin. by the way meron naman kayong annbel rama sa cebu mga mandaraya talaga ang UNA

  • Billy Reyes

    I think if visayas & mindanao will give solid vote it could be Osmena the next President. And it should be Him he’s very capable.

    Para naman maiba puro na lang taga Luzon ang Presidente, Majority of the National Funds napupunta sa Luzon & NCR. 

  • Bob

    I’m sure, Serge Osmena good at politics. I recall how he got free milage at the expense of Recto last election, kungwari exit daw sa LP pag kasama sa ticket si Mr. E-VAT. But he couldn’t fool Cebu when running for Mayor… no no… lost there, can’t win smart voters who know better.

    • Roel Tariman

      Serge did not run for Mayor.  He lost a congressional seat but that wasn’t supposedly his district and that was long time ago.

  • Simplify1

    Ang babaw naman ni Tiangco… pag lalabanin pa ata sina drilon at osmena sa pagalingan mangampanya…. hahahaha!  sumakit tuloy tyanko sa katatawa!!

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5TBFLMGYQ6VOQOSMUUFHOML5VE Archie B

      genius toby, isn’t? :)

      he is trying to place the campaign strats of Team PNoy in peril. sa sinabi ni Toby, boost ng morale yan ni Serge. so Serge will stay and trying to go up to control. while Drilon, will hold the post and will try to do his part to control and avoiding Serge to take over. if thats happend, credit much to Toby!

      • Simplify1

        sorry… hindi siya genius… ang babaw nga eh!   Problema na UNA yung political platform nila… hindi daw sila bilib sa matuwid na daan ni pnoy pero hindi din daw sila kacontra ni Pnoy…. anong klaseng double talk yan…. pagasa na lang nila, masira ang campaign ng Pnoy team… 

      • white scorpion

        di lang double talk. double double ang representationS nila. sa commercial ads ng una. anak ni binay ang nakalinya sa una, while kasama rin siya sa team p-noy. another is that si vp ay alter ego ng prez. tapos kinokontra si p-noy. he should have resign his cabinet position first bago niya tirahin si prez. what does it signifies. no self confidence and double crosser. 

        question: paano nila pauunlarin ang bayan. eleksion pa lang. hindi nila alam kung saan lulugar.

  • white scorpion

    tobits, mag-resign ka na this early. aga aga pa, kinakabahan ka na. OR, nang-iintriga ka lang. anyway, heard from the grapevine. wala ka naman kapasidad…. pambabasura alam mong racket.

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