Fresh faces, young politicians emerge
Voters took a chance on fresh faces and young politicians in the midterm elections in the provinces.
Retired police general Benjamin Magalong, who led the fact-finding team that implicated Malacañang and police officials in the botched 2015 Mamasapano operation, is the Baguio City mayor-elect.
Magalong defeated eight candidates, including incumbent Vice Mayor Edison Bilog and Councilor Edgar Avila. A member of Philippine Military Academy Sandigan Class of 1982, Magalong retired as deputy chief for operations of the Philippine National Police.
In Olongapo City, a 28-year-old lawyer has been elected as its new mayor. Rolen Paulino Jr., a substitute of his father, Mayor Rolen Paulino, defeated Anne Marie Gordon, sister-in-law of Sen. Richard Gordon.
Paulino Jr. admitted that he was banking on the legacy of his father, who broke the Gordon family’s rein over the city in 2013.
Seven of the winning mayoral candidates in Ilocos Norte province are also new faces.
Another newcomer in the Ilocos Norte provincial board is Rodolfo Christian Fariñas III, youngest son of Ilocos Norte Rep. Rodolfo Fariñas, whose decision to back down allowed Matthew Joseph Manotoc to be elected Ilocos Norte governor.
Manotoc is a son of outgoing Gov. Imee Marcos.
In Zambales province, former Gov. Hermogenes Ebdane Jr. defeated his long-time rival, incumbent Gov. Amor Deloso, who was seeking his second term.
In Pampanga, Juan Miguel Arroyo won in his comeback bid for Congress, replacing his mother, outgoing Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, in the second district.
Immediate relatives of politicians slain in La Union province last year won in Monday’s elections.
Reelectionist Mayor Aleli Concepcion and her brother, outgoing Board Member Carlo Castor Concepcion, who ran for vice mayor, were proclaimed winners on Tuesday, according to Gregorio Cabanban Jr., the town’s election officer.
Their father, Vice Mayor Al-Fred Concepcion, was killed on Nov. 14 last year when armed men fired at his two-vehicle convoy as it drove to the town hall. Mayor Concepcion and eight others were wounded during the attack.
In Sudipen town, Mayor Wendy Buquing has been proclaimed winner. She became mayor when her husband, Mayor Alexander Buquing, was killed in an ambush on Oct. 1 last year. Wendy survived the attack when her husband shielded her from gunfire aimed at their pickup truck.
In Agoo town, reelectionist Mayor Stefanie Ann Eriguel won in the town’s mayoral race. Eriguel’s father, former La Union Rep. Eufranio Eriguel, was killed in a gun attack on the eve of the barangay elections on May 12 last year. —Reports from Joanna Rose Aglibot, Kimberlie Quitasol, Yolanda Sotelo, Leilanie Adriano and Gabriel Cardinoza
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.