Davao del Sur governor Cagas dies of COVID-19

Davao del Sur Governor Douglas Cagas died of COVID-19 on Thursday morning, June 10. He was 77.

Cagas's family confirmed the governor's death in a statement released by the provincial government of Davao del Sur.

Cagas passed away at around 5 am at the Medical Center for Digos Cooperative Hospital​ in Digos City. 

"It is our deepest sorrow that we announce the passing of Governor Douglas 'Dodo' Cagas this morning, owing to COVID complications. He has joined his Creator in heaven," the statement read.

Sherwin Cesar, Davao del Sur information officer, said Cagas's remains were brought to Davao City by mid-morning for cremation.

The death of the governor came as a shock to many, he said, because everything happened so fast.

"Despite the governor's age, he was still physically capable, and he even jogged daily," Cesar said.

Cesar said Cagas was rushed to the hospital on June 3 after he tested positive for COVID-19, and he fell very ill the following day.

The governor's son, Marc Douglas IV, was also admitted to the hospital for COVID-19. He was reportedly recuperating.

Cagas's wife Mercedes was also reportedly in the hospital, but the reason for her confinement was unclear.

Cesar said Cagas reported for work at the time when 10 capitol workers tested positive for COVID-19.

The Cagas family established a political dynasty in Davao del Sur. Mercedes is the province's representative, and his son Marc Douglas, the vice governor, would automatically succeed him.

The late governor had a political career that spanned for more than three decades. He served as an assemblyman in the '80s, and as a congressman from 1998 to 2007.

Cagas had served the province during the Marcos era – he was in the opposition when he was a member of the Batasang Pambansa.

Cagas was first elected as governor in 2007 and stepped down in 2013. He served as governor again in 2016 until his death. He was on his fifth term as governor, and was gunning for a sixth term in the 2022 elections. – Rappler.com