Tomas: I supported Mar but also guarded Digong’s votes

By: Morexette Marie B. Erram August 22,2018 - 10:35 PM


Why did President Rodrigo Duterte publicly acknowledged Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña before 200 town mayors during his visit in Cebu City on Tuesday?

For Osmeña, it could be because of the fact that he helped “protect” Duterte’s votes during the presidential race in 2016.

“I supported Mar Roxas but I didn’t hate Duterte. I hate Binay (Jejomar Binay) though. There is something people don’t know why he talked that way,” Osmeña told reporters in a press conference on Wednesday (August 22) afternoon.

Osmeña said he had asked Duterte several times if he is running for president in 2016. But since the latter still could not make up his mind at that time, he threw his support behind the presidential bid of Roxas.

“I told Rody and I kept asking him if he was running for President. He said no and I told him that now I am here with Mar, I can’t get out of this but I will do something for you. I will protect your votes,” he added.

The mayor said he tasked and deployed several supporters of the Bando Osmeña Pundok Kauswagan (BOPK) — the local party he founded — to serve as poll-watchers for Duterte, Grace Poe, Miriam Defensor–Santiago, and Roxas and the rest of Liberal Party’s (LP) candidates during the May 2016 Presidential elections.

Osmeña’s BOPK is allied with LP, the political nemesis of the ruling party, PDP–Laban.

Utang na loob Cebu, one of the vote-rich provinces in the country, delivered over a million votes for Duterte, the most for any presidential candidate. Of this number more than 300,000 are from Cebu City.

When President Duterte visited Cebu for the fifth time this year last Tuesday, he opened his two-hour speech by acknowledging the people who supported him and underscored the value of utang-na-loob especially during election seasons.

Aside from Osmeña, Mr. Duterte also mentioned former Cordova Mayor and now Presidential Legislative Liaison Officer Adelino Sitoy, and Presidential Assistant to the Visayas Michael Lloyd Dino who founded the ‘Bisaya na Pud’ movement which launched a massive campaign for Duterte.

“In the Visayas, it was the mayor of Cordova. Where my father was born in Danao — I had none, well, of course except my relatives kasi taga diyan kami eh. But that was it,” President Duterte said.

“Of course dito Tommy Osmeña went open for me. Iyon lang ang nakita ko na… Well, of course ‘yang mga the civilian sectors sila Ding, Borja, Dino, and a few guys,” he added.

Osmeña was not invited to Duterte’s meeting with the different Visayas municipal mayors last Tuesday.

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TAGS: Also, Digong’s, guarded, mar, supported, Tomas, votes

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