Amid tight mayoralty race in Metro Manila, jittery bets await poll outcome
MANILA, Philippines — Metro Manila is home to some of the tightest and closely monitored mayoralty race in the country partly due to a mixture of family legacy and long-standing rivalries.
Unlike an elective position in the national level, the winner in the city mayoralty race can be known within a few hours after voting in polling precincts has been closed.
Until final results are out, mayoral candidates as well as their respective supporters go through a roller coaster of emotions and would almost always be restless and on their toes.
While Makati has several aspiring mayors, two names stood out from the lot — siblings Abby and Junjun Binay.
In April, merely weeks before Election Day, Abby and Jujun had a verbal tussle during an election forum held inside San Ildefonso Parish.
Both Abby and Junjun were confident about clinching the city’s top seat.
Abby said she is not feeling any pressure about the results of the mayoralty race, citing pre-election surveys showing her lead over her opponents.
“Even the fake surveys said I would win,” Abby said in jest during her campaign rally.
Similarly, Junjun said he will win as residents of areas he visited assured him of their votes.
“Of all the places I went to here in Makati, all the people told me one thing: They would vote for me,” Junjun said in his own campaign rally.
San Juan City
San Juan was also a stage for a neck-and-neck fight for the mayoral post in entire Metro Manila – incumbent Vice Mayor Janella Estrada was slugging it out against former Vice Mayor Francis Zamora.
In an interview after voting at Xavier School on Monday morning, Zamora said he stayed up all Sunday night to monitor any “unusual” activities in the city’s villages.
“Patuloy kaming magbabantay. Kaya ako bumoto nang maaga para makapagbantay na rin throughout the day and make sure na maging malinis at patas ang halalang ito,” Zamora said.
Estrada, meanwhile, who is seeking to continue her family’s five-decade legacy in the city, said she is feeling pressured but confident of her win.
“As of now, I can see that I’m ahead for coming elections. The people see who’s really deserving,” Estrada said during her campaign rally last May 5.
In the nation’s capital city, it was a three-corner fight for the local chief executive post: two octogenarians – incumbent Mayor Joseph Estrada and former Mayor Alfredo Lim, and 44-year-old former Vice Mayor Isko Moreno.
Lim, who is running under President Rodrigo Duterte’s PDP-Laban, sought for a clean election outcome after voting in Tondo.
Moreno, meanwhile, said he remains tense until results have been declared final.
“Ever since, lagi akong kinakabahan, laging may kaba sa dibdib, dinadaga pa rin tayo kahit papaano, kahit na been there done that kasi this is democracy eh,” Moreno said after he voted at the Manuel L. Quezon Elementary School in Tondo.
The Eusebio clan has been at the helm of Pasig City since 1992, with incumbent Mayor Robert “Bobby” Eusebio seeking reelection.
But 29-year-old neophyte Victor Ma. “Vico” Sotto ran in a bid to end the Eusebio clan’s domination in the city.
“Let’s treat Pasigueños not just as beneficiaries, but as partners. If we treat our citizens as partners in governance, the services that we give to them will be more responsive, and will become better,” Sotto earlier said.
This challenge was welcomed by Eusebio as soon as he filed his certificate for candidacy (COC) for reelection, and noted that that’s how democracy works.
“I believe the people of Pasig are really clamoring for change. I am ready to be that face of change,” Eusebio told INQUIRER.net after filing his COC.
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