Facebook war between Osmeña, Labella rages
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The online war continues between Cebu City’s two mayoral candidates as the May 13 elections draws near.
The online exchange started with Mayor Tomas Osmeña revealing a series of documents, which showed that Vice Mayor Edgardo Labella requested the release of the impounded motorcycle owned by a certain Odelo Ybañez from the police.
Osmeña, the standard bearer of Bando Osmeña-Pundok Kauswagan (BOPK) posted the documents showing a sworn affidavit of Ybañez saying that he was specifically asked if he would be voting for Labella in the upcoming elections.
Ybañez said he would vote for Labella.
According to the affidavit, Ybañez was not given a violation sheet and awaited the endorsement of Labella so he could reclaim his motorcycle.
“When the motorcycle was confiscated, the driver was not even issued a TOP or violation sheet, all he was told was to go to Labella. These are the same police who told the brgy. captains whose houses were strafed to also go to Labella,” said Osmeña through his post.
Labella, standard bearer of Partido Barug-PDP Laban, responded to this allegations through his own Facebook page saying that Osmeña could not use the documents against him because he followed a procedure.
“Unlike you, I always follow procedure (hence, the letter), and I will never break illegal butane refillers (your refillers) out of jail by harassing and intimidating the police. Kanang imong style maoy klarong illegal Tom!” said Labella.
Labella also called the actions of Osmeña as desperate and that the mayor’s tirades against the police were childish acts of the “real losing candidate.”
Osmeña replied in his own posts that Labella was allegedly terrorizing the Cebuanos into voting for him.
The mayor also claimed that Labella was allegedly behind the strafing incidents in Barangays Malubog, Sudlon II, and Sinsin.
Labella denied the accusations as well in another Facebook post saying that he had no control over the police.
“I do not control the PNP (Philippine National Police), Mr Osmena. Your insinuation that I do insults not only me but the PNP who are doing their best so that Cebu City will have an honest, orderly and peaceful elections,” said Labella.
In response, Osmeña challenged Labella on a bet that the Partido Barug-PDP Laban North District slate would not win and that former Mayor Mike Rama, who would be running as Labella’s vice mayor, would lose in the South District.
Labella did not respond to this new tirade against him on Facebook but responded to the media after the special session on Friday, April 12.
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He admitted that he signed the endorsement letter of Ybañez, but he said it was out of public service and did not ask for any declaration of loyalty.
“Akong purpose ato hangyo lang, request aron matabangan ang kabus. (My purpose of the letter was to request the police and help the poor.) It was just a request, I would never impose anything,” said Labella.
Labella said that the allegations of Osmeña were unfair for him and that he had always served the public without discrimination./dbs
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