Bayron wins Puerto Princesa recall election over Hagedorn
PUERTO PRINCESA CITY–Incumbent City Mayor Lucilo R. Bayron weathered the election recall bid mounted by the camp of former mayor Edward S. Hagedorn, winning by a decisive margin in a tension-filled but generally peaceful special polls held Friday.
The Commission on Elections promptly declared Bayron as the winner early Saturday morning following a manual tabulation of votes and after overruling the repeated motions of Hagedorn’s lawyers to suspend the proclamation on allegations of election irregularities.
“I knew I was going to win. I was even expecting a wider margin,” said Bayron, who got 44,299 votes over Hagedorn’s 39,002.
Following his proclamation early Saturday morning at the provincial Capitol venue, Bayron called for unity among a city electorate intensely divided by the recall exercise.
“The people have spoken. If my detractors really care for Puerto Princesa, they should listen to the voice of the people and we have to unite,” Bayron said.
READ: Puerto recall exclamation point of severed poll ties
Bayron however lambasted newly installed city police chief Senior Superintendent Ernesto Tindero whom he accused of political partisanship.
“It’s very clear that he (Tindero) is partisan. We will do everything we can to have him replaced,” Bayron said.
Tindero was installed as City Philippine National Police head during the heat of the recall elections, amidst protestation by Bayron.
Voting in the city’s 66 barangays (villages) showed Bayron winning by a narrow margin in most precincts within the city proper, and snatching wins in several outlying villages which observers said was the traditional bailiwick of Hagedorn.
Hagedorn had served as mayor of Puerto Princesa City for about 20 years, punctuated in 2002 by a successful recall bid against then seating mayor Dennis Socrates who yielded to Hagedorn after serving for only one year.
Bayron consistently won as Hagedorn’s vice mayor during the same period until the two severed political and family ties when Bayron squared off and won against Hagedorn’s wife for the mayoralty post in 2013.
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