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Catbalogan Mayor Dexter Uy and his father, Vice Mayor Coefredo “Tekwa” Uy, filed their certificates of candidacy (COCs) for reelection on Tuesday, October 5.
The mayor’s sister, Councilor Stephany Uy-Tan, also filed her candidacy for the same post. They are all running under the Nacionalista Party.
Before filing their COCs, the Uys and their lineup of councilors attended Mass, then went around Catbalogan in a motorcade with hundreds of supporters rallying behind them.
The list of councilors under their slate includes a mix of veteran and fresh faces: John James Honrales, Renell Francis Aquino, Melanie Macabare, Antonio Bolastig IV, Jun Master Dacaynos, Josephine Pescos, Jem Gabon, Jeffrey Uy, and Melvin Perez.
The mayor and vice mayor are seeking a second consecutive term.
Vice Mayor Uy was a three-term mayor until 2013, when he was succeeded by daughter Stephany as Catbalogan chief executive. Stephany was mayor until 2019, and was succeeded by her brother, Dexter.
Prior to her election as mayor, Stephany was a councilor. After serving two terms, she again ran and won as councilor. Stephany is the ex-wife of former vice Governor Stephen James “Jimboy” Tan, a member of another infuential political clan in Samar.
The Uy political clan has been running Catbalogan for almost two decades. But their reign is not without controversies.
In 2019, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) imposed a six-month preventive suspension order against Stephany, the vice mayor, and city councilors for the alleged overpriced purchase of a 5.8-hectare property.
Mayor Uy recently faced criticisms for a planned demolition at the city pier, which would displace at least 258 families who feared long wait for permanent relocation. It has since been postponed.
The family also runs numerous businesses in the city, including a coffee shop that opened earlierin 2021. – Rappler.com
Lance Paolo Lim is a Visayas-based journalist and an awardee of the Aries Rufo Journalism Fellowship.