By SHERWIN DE VERA
BAGUIO CITY — This May 13 midterm elections, it will be a walk in the park for 19 aspirants for the mayoral seat and 26 vice mayoral candidates in Region 1. Running unopposed, they only need to cast their vote to take the seat in their local governments.
For the fourth time since the 2010 elections, Ilocos Sur topped the list with 10 mayoral and 12 vice-mayoral bets, of which nine tandems were unopposed.
Unopposed mayoral candidates are Samuel Parilla (Bantay), Pablito Benjamin Maggay II (Cervantes), Victoria Ina Favis (Magsingal), Amalia Cabrera (Nagbukel), Leopoldo Gironella (Salcedo), Christian Purisima (San Ildefonso), Teresita Valle (Santa Cruz), Floro Tadena (Santo Domingo), Jose Tabanda III (San Vicente) and Juan Carlo Medina (Vigan City).
Unchallenged Vice mayoral candidates are Mar Ruel Sumabat (Alilem), William Pre (Bantay), Kristelle Singson (Candon City), Arlyn Favis (Magsingal), Randolf John Cabrera (Nagbukel), Ninya Gironella-Itchon (Salcedo), Robert Riego (San Ildefonso), Virgilio Valle (Santa Cruz), Bryen Dexter Tadena (Santo Domingo), Maria Nancy Tabanda (San Vicente), Samuel Subagan, Jr. (Suyo) and Lourder Baquiran (Vigan City).
Five of the mayoral candidates are running for reelection. The remaining candidates, except for Favis served as mayors of their towns in the past. While of the 12 aspiring vice mayors, Cabrera is the only neophyte in politics.
All are with Bileg ti Ilocano, a local party founded by former governor Luis Chavit Singson except for the candidates in Vigan City who are under the Nacionalista Party.
The Province of Ilocos Norte comes in second with four mayoral candidates and their running mates for vice mayor, are unchallenged. Besides the four, three more towns have lone candidates for vice mayor. All candidates are running under the Nacionalista Party except for the mayor of San Nicolas who chose to be independent.
Unopposed mayoral candidates are Fidel Cimatu, Jr. (Bangui), Cresente Garcia (Burgos), Lairvee Garcia (Dumalneg) and Alfredo Valdez, Jr. while those for vice mayor are Denton Garvida (Bangui), Chrislyn Abadilla (Banna), Rodolfo Garcia (Burgos), Francisco Espiritu, Jr. (Dumalneg), Caroline Garvida (Nueva Era ), Edistio Valdez (San Nicolas), Amado Victor Racimo (Vintar). All are eyeing reelection except for the Garcias who swapped their current office and Caroline Garvida who is an incumbent mayor.
Pangasinan has four mayoral and three vice mayoral bets with no contenders. Noel Geslani (Malsiqui), Kenneth Perez (San Manuel), Clark Tui (San Quintin) and Carlos Mapili (Tayug) are unopposed for mayor. While Rizalde Bernal (Dasol), Alain Perez (San Manuel) and Lorna Primicias (Tayug) will take the vice mayoral post uncontested.
Meanwhile in La Union, Bellarmin Flores III (Rosario), who is running for reelection, is the only unchallenged mayoral post. While Ma. Minda Fontanilla (Bacnotan), Virginio Dabalos (Bangar), Oscar Reyes (Luna) and Alfredo Ortega (San Fernando City) will take the vice mayor’s seat without opposition.
Ten of the unopposed tandems are related by blood or by affinity.
Candidates in Santa Cruz, San Vicente and Dumalneg are husband and wife. In Nagbukel town, it is mother and child. While father and son are running in Santo Domingo and Burgos.
Brothers are unopposed in San Nicolas, uncle and niece/nephew tandem in Salcedo and San Manuel, and in-laws for Magsingal. # nordis.net