Old and new faces to join 2022 elections in Cebu City
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Old and new faces are expected to file their Certificates of Candidacy (COCs) this October to seek elective posts in Cebu City in the 2022 polls.
But nothing is final to date as both camps — the Bando Osmeña Pundok Kauswagan (BO-PK) and the Barug PDP-Laban — continue their selection process.
Sources from BO-PK’s camp said their leader and former Mayor Tomas Osmena had yet to make a formal announcement as to who would be included in their line-up.
This early, the group is said to be eyeing either south district Rep. Rodrigo Abellanosa or Association of Barangay Councils (ABC) President Franklyn Ong for the city’s top posts should Osmeña decide not to run for mayor and instead focus on the south district.
However, a formal announcement has yet to be made on who among the two will run for mayor and vice mayor respectively.
Since Abellanosa is now serving his last term as south district representative, the possibility of him settling for a City Hall position is not remote, said the CDND source who asked not to be named since he is not authorized to publicly speak of party developments.
If this happens, there is a possibility that former Mayor Osmeña will run for election in the south district just like what he did in the 2010 election.
Osmeña occupied the position that was vacated by the late Rep. Antonio Cuenco for one term before Abellanosa sought election and won the post in 2013.
Ong, for his part, has been visiting the different barangays in Cebu City to launch his community pantry program, an indication that he was preparing to run for an elective post. As ABC president, he is now an ex-officio member of the City Council.
The CDND source said that former Mayor Osmeña met with BO-PK allies on June 4, but no announcement was made. The gathering was just made to bond with allies.
On the other camp, both Mayor Edgardo Labella and Vice Mayor Michael Rama have remained mum about their election plans.
Labella is now on a three-week medical leave to fully recover form his sepsis and has designated Rama as the acting mayor.
A source said that the acting mayor has already expressed his intention to run for mayor. He amentioned this during a gathering of north district allies, which was held last week.
But Rama’s camp would not confirm this.
Councilor Raymond Alvin Garcia, for his part, told CDND that he was interested to run for vice mayor.
“If there is an opportunity for me to serve the people of Cebu City at a higher position, I am willing to accept that challenge,” Garcia said.
But he still has to undergo their group’s selection process before anything will be made final, he added.
Filing of COCs
Comelec has set the filing of COCs from October 1 to 8, 2021. The campaign period for those seeking local posts is scheduled from March 25 to May 7, 2022.
But this early, various names have already been floated for inclusion in the line-up of the two opposing groups in Cebu City.
In Cebu City’s north district, Rachel “Cutie” del Mar, the daughter of the late Rep. Raul del Mar, said in an earlier interview that she planned to continue her father’s legacy of serving the people in their district.
She may be faced by Mariano “Mimo” Osmeña, the son of Former Cebu Gov. Emilio “Lito” Osmeña; and actor Richard Yap, whom sources said is planning to again try his luck as north district representative in Congress.
Yap sought election for the same post in 2019, but he failed to unseat the late Congressman Del Mar.
For the council seat, Councilors Nestor Archival, Joy Young, Leah Japson and Alvin Dizon are expected to seek re-election under BO-PK, the CDND source said.
The same source added that the group of former Mayor Osmeña is considering the inclusion of former councilors Alvin Arcilla, Sisinio Andales, Mary Ann Delos Santos into their slate.
Others who are being considered include former Tejero Councilor and now Lapu-Lapu City COSAP head Gary Lao and ALU-TUCP spokesperson Arturo Barrit.
Lao confirmed to CDN Digital that he already told Osmeña of his intention to again try his luck in politics in next year’s election. He ran for councilor in the 2016 election but lost.
“I already expressed my interest to run again, but I will have to go through the selection process,” he said.
BO-PK’s north district slate will be going against re-electionist Councilors Niña Mabatid, Jerry Guardo, and Joel Garganera of Partido Barug – PDP Laban.
A source said that several names have been floated for possible inclusion in the administration camp’s slate “but nothing is final yet.”
Cebu City South District Slate
In the south district, BO-PK is said to be considering Pie Abella, sister of the late lawyer Amay Abella; former SK Federation President Jessica Resch; Cogon Pardo Councilor Omar Kintanar; former Councilor Roberto Cabbarubias and Jose Bebot Abellano, son of congressman Rodrigo Abellanosa, in their slate.
Other names that are being floated include that of businessman Ian Osmeña and Bea Osmeña, the daughter-in-law of former Mayor Osmeña.
They will be joining reelectionist Councilor Yayoy Alcoseba.
From Barug’s camp, Councilor Edu Rama and former councilor Jocelyn Pesquera are said to be interested with the south district’s congressional seat.
The CDND source said that if Pesquera would not be chosen, she could opt to go back to the City Council to join reelectionist Councilors Donaldo Hontiveros, James Cuenco, Philip Zafra, and Renato Osmeña Jr.
The other possible candidates include former Councilor Gerry Carillo and former City Lawyer Rey Gealon.
Zafra for his part said that he had yet to make a decision as to whether or not he would seek reelection.
“Amidst the pandemic focus usa ko sa trabaho ug serbisyo (I’m focused for now on my work and on serving the people). It’ not good to discuss elections as of this time,” Zafra said.
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