NEWS: Davao del Norte battle royale shifts to vice gubernatorial race

dec 7

* Baby takes swipe at Dangpanan for much talk
* Dangpanan says credentials matter in legislation

TAGUM CITY- With the backing out of Lakas supposed Lakas candidate Margie Moran-Floirendo from gubernatorial race and ergo, the unopposed reelection bid of Davao del Norte Governor Rodolfo del Rosario (Liberal Party), the battle royale that was then expected to spark between the two clanmates appears now to have shifted to the vice gubernatorial race.

Pundits here have speculated that the vice gubernatorial race would be tight as reelectionist Vice Gov. Victorio “Baby” Suaybaguio Jr  (LP) and Boardmember Roger “Dangpanan” Israel (Lakas-Kampi-CMD) would be respectively supported by their patrons, the Floirendo and Del Rosario camps.

Former Congressman Antonio “Tonyboy” Floirendo Jr , who is not running, and Gov. Del Rosario have been largely considered as political kingpins in the second and first districts in the province, respectively.

“Whoever wins in the vice gubernatorial race vindicates who is the real  political kingpin throughout the province,” said  a boardmember who requested not to be named.

And last week the two vice gubernatorial candidates started to snipe at each other although in obviously withheld temper.

Suaybaguio took a swipe to Israel saying that the latter talks so much in giving reasons of his running.

“He should not talk so much about his qualifications for vice governor, that he is this and he is that. Talking about how to render and sustain more public services to the people of the province would do more good for him,” the vice governor said in an interview.

“He was not replaced in the provincial slate that was still being finalized the other Sunday. On the day of the fiesta (of Tagum City , Nov. 22) he was even visited by the governor, but the next thing we knew on the next day, he was absent in the session of the provincial board and we heard he was already sitting beside Margie (Moran-Floirendo),” Suaybaguio added.

The ex-Miss Universe took her oath on Nov 23 as new member of Lakas-Kampi-CMD and declared she was excited to run for governor against her husband’s uncle by marriage, Del Rosario. She backed out from the race a few days after citing her “own Roxas-Moran family has prevailed over me to desist from pursuing my plans so as not to be caught in a family feud that may conclude to a bitter end.”

Suaybaguio, who joined in the exodus of Lakas incumbents in District 1 led by the governor to LP, added that he was not harboring ill feelings to the decision of Israel to remain with Lakas and run against him saying: “This is a free country. I respect his option and I can’t prevent him to run against me… even then I still consider him as a worthy member of one legislative body which has the vision of bringing true development for the people of the province.”

But Israel , in separate interview over the weekend, was quick to rebut Suaybaguio that he has just credentials to show and that these credentials matter since the position they are vying for is legislation.

He said that he has a long track record in legislative performance being a legislator and government worker for 15 years serving in various capacity as boardmember, former Tagum city councilor and ex-barangay councilor and barangay captain and Lupong Tagapamayapa chairman.

He said that he became even a senator of Jaycees Club International “like Senator Juan Ponce Enrile who was also a JCI senator”.

Asked about Israel ’s statements, Suaybaguio said , “cool… I would not quarrel with him with those”.

For his part, Israel said: “Maayo si Baby kay nahimong mayor sa Tagum, ako wala (Baby is better since he became a Tagum city mayor). But Dangpanan said he is presently “collecting  something” which he said he could not yet reveal at press time “as his secret yet which could defeat Baby”.

Suaybaguio and Israel , both hailing from the vote-rich Tagum City , have had their days considered as nino bonitos in the city’s politics. (Cha Monforte/Rural Urban News)

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