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ILOILO CITY, Philippines – Despite delays in transmission, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) in Iloilo City proclaimed reelectionists Representative Jerry Trenas, Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog, and Vice-Mayor Joe III Espinosa, together with the newly-elected city councilors from the Liberal Party slate.
Trenas got 166,659 votes against Dan Cartagena’s (UNA) 27,222; Mabilog, 148,658, against Gold Gonzales’ (UNA) 53,371 and Arnel dela Llana’s (Independent) 1,609; and Espinosa, 144,521, against Ronaldo Dabao’s (UNA) 27,388.
This will be the Trenas-Mabilog-Espinosa team’s third winning streak since they formed the coalition in the 2010 elections.
The party also won 10 out of the 12 city councilor seats – Jefrrey Ganzon, Candice Tupas, Lady Baronda, Jay Trenas, Mandrie Malabor, Ed Penaredindo, Armand Parcon, Boots Gerochi, Lee Zulueta and Ely Estante Jr.
Meanwhile, UNA’s Joshua Alim and Plaridel Nava secured their respective seats back in the council.
Iloilo City was divided into 430 clustered precincts with 83.68% total voter turnout of the 261, 481 registered voters across 130 barangays. (Read: Which home provinces delivered for presidential, VP candidates?)
Election Officer Jomar Betita decided to adjourn the canvassing due to unforeseen problems with the transmission of votes on May 9. Some VCMs had to be replaced at 4pm on election day, while others had to be taken out of the precinct just to get signal for transmission.
It was already around 4pm on May 10 when the transmission was finally completed and the canvassing of the election returns started.
“All precincts have election returns. They will serve as a guide to validate the results,” Betita said after adjourning the canvassing to clarify doubts raised by the media regarding discrepancies.
Betita was emotional when he announced that despite all the delays, they were ready to proclaim the winners by 7pm.
Politics in Iloilo has been a family affair among familiar names.
Trenas was former mayor before he moved to the House of Representatives for the lone district of Iloilo City, while Mabilog and Espinosa were the vice mayor and the city councilor, respectively.
Newly elected city councilor Candice Tupas is the wife of former councilor, and now National Youth Commission chair, Lex Tupas, while Lady Baronda is the sister of the former councilor Love Jam Baronda.
Jay Trenas is the nephew of Jerry Trenas, and Inday Lee Zulueta is the daughter of former Councilor Inday Perla Zulueta.
Treñas and Jose Espinosa III are brothers-in-law, having married sisters Rosalie Sarabia-Treñas and Gina Sarabia-Espinosa. – with report from Kim Rojas/Rappler.com
Russel Jude Patina is Rappler’s lead Mover in Iloilo.