Mood gleeful in Tagum’s first day of campaign period

By Cha Monforte, Rural Urban News

MARCH 27

TAGUM CITY- As the campaign period started yesterday, candidates and their campaigners here went to public market and public places, openly handshaking and distributing handbills and tarpaulin posters stood up in common posting and prohibited areas while others had motorcade sorties going around including interior barangays.

Visible were vehicles covered with candidates’ posters going around with sound systems blaring political jingles while many pedicabs were carrying in its side or atop posters of local candidates.

It is again political fiesta time also here and many among the city folks showed gleeful mood upon seeing candidates and their followers wearing vests and propaganda t-shirts in colors after the signature colors of their national presidential candidates- yellow for Nonoy Aquino of the Liberal Party, green for Gibo Teodoro of the Lakas-Kampi-CMD, orange for Manny Villar of the Nacionalista Party.

The province is however dominated by yellow and green as unopposed Governor Rodolfo del Rosario and his son District 1 congressional candidate Anthony Rafael del Rosario have been actively campaigning for Noynoy, while also unopposed District 2 Congressman Anton Lagdameo is strongly pushing for Teodoro. Only Anthony’ congressional rival ex-Boardmember Emily Alvarez is visible in flashing the political paraphernalia of Villar as his husband ex-congressman and former DOTC secretary Pantaleon “Bebot” Alvarez was reported to be an NP regional coordinator.

Comelec-Davao del Norte provincial officer Atty. Marlon Casquejo bared in an interview that the province has a total of 362 candidates from 32 candidates for mayors, 24 for vice mayors, 276 for councilors, three for congressman, one for governor, two for vice governor and 24 for boardmembers.

Reelectionist Vice Governor Victorio “Baby” Suaybaguio Jr, in separate interview, expressed optimism that the automated election that the voters in his province would have to experience for the first time would be peaceful and successful considering the generally non-violent characteristic of Davao del Norte’s elections.

Tagum City Mayor Rey Chiong Uy (Liberal Party), who was celebrating his 54th birthday yesterday, assured city folks that the coming election would be a fair and peaceful, and said that his birthday wish was for him to win again for a third term, though showing confidence over his leading rivals – last-termer Congressman Arrel Olano (independent Lakas-Kampi-CMD), and former Governor Gelacio “Yayong” Gementiza (independent).

Also taking a crack for the city mayoralty post are ex-police investigator and businessman Cesar Cuntapay ( independent) and an obscure candidate Charlito Amespero (independent), reportedly a bugasero (rice trader).

Uy is bannering a campaign slogan and jingle, “Nobody Nobody But Uy”, a revised version of Wonder Girls’ Nobody But You hit, while Olano flashes his known slogan “Una sa Serbisyo” even as Gementiza digs in on his platform of giving many free services for the poor.

But Uy, Olano and Gementiza, all considered as political heavyeights in this electoral season, have already been trading barbs and issues over the media preceding Day 1 of the 2010 election campaign.

As Tagum candidates did their respective campaigning, towards the noon a simmering heat enveloped the city of palms in partaking a share of sufferance from the El Nino badly hitting Mindanao which is causing for the continued rotating brownouts- twin whammies which could affect political campaigns and rallies the next days ahead- but by past lunchtime moderate showers struck in the city, at least cooling off the hot temperature to give a sort of respite to campaigning candidates in battling the rigors of the electoral husting that had just formally begun. (Cha Monforte/Rural Urban News)

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