Vicente ‘Dongkoy’ Emano, 76
CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY – One of Mindanao’s most prominent political figures, who is running for vice mayor of this city in next week’s midterm elections, died of pneumonia in a private hospital early Tuesday morning.
Vicente “Dongkoy” Emano, who served at least four terms as city mayor here and three-terms as governor of Misamis Oriental, was 76.
His son, Misamis Oriental Gov. Yevgeny Vincente Emano, said his father’s remains would be cremated on Tuesday and his burial would be on Saturday.
Born on March 31, 1943, Emano first entered politics when he was elected mayor of Tagoloan town, Misamis Oriental in 1980.
He served until the end of his first term in 1983. He was elected provincial governor of Misamis Oriental in 1986 and served three terms as such until 1995.
In 1998, he was elected mayor of Cagayan de Oro and served for three terms, after which, he ran as vice mayor and won in 2007.
At the end of his first term as vice mayor, he ran again as mayor in 2010 and won and served until the end of his first term in 2013.
This year after a six-year hiatus, he ran again as vice mayor, alongside Jose Gabriel “Pompee” La Viña, an ally of President Duterte, who is running for mayor under Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HnP).
Both his political allies and opponents remembered Emano with sadness.
“I am saddened that I lost my running mate who is my partner in my quest for a new Cagayan
de Oro, but only our Creator knows when our end is,” La Viña said in a statement.
La Viña said he admired Emano for his contribution to the progress and development of Cagayan de Oro and Misamis Oriental.
“We have lost a great man, a titan in [Cagayan de Oro] politics. We know him for his sincerity in helping the poor and the marginalized,” said former 2nd District Rep. Rufus Rodriguez, an ally of Emano and La Viña.
“Although we were on different sides in many political exercises, I am comforted by the fact that I had a full reconciliation with him and greatly honored to be with him in his last political endeavor,” Rodriguez said.
Incumbent city mayor Oscar Moreno, who is seeking re-election, said he started his political career in 1995 under Emano’s Padayon Pilipino, the party that Emano founded.
“Succeeding elections saw us in opposing camps, except only in 2004, when I ran for governor of Misamis Oriental for my first term,” Moreno said in a statement.
“Over these past years, we fought a hard and long battle. It brought the best of both of us. But deep inside, we have remained friends. I have forgiven him and I hope that he has forgiven me, too,” the mayor said.
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