Running for Makati mayor? History shows odds will be against Kid Peña

MANILA, Philippines – One month into his stint as acting mayor, and on his 46th birthday, Makati Vice Mayor Romulo “Kid” Peña Jr announced on Wednesday, August 5, that he is "ready" to run for the chief local executive post in 2016.  

Most possibly to face off against currently suspended Mayor Jejomar Erwin "Junjun" Binay Jr, Peña, in the event he wins, would be the first Makati vice mayor in post-EDSA history to win against the Binays.

History shows the road to becoming mayor will be tough for Peña. All former vice mayors who gunned for the top post in Makati have been beaten by a Binay.

In 2010, then-Vice Mayor Ernesto Mercado, who used to be allied with Vice President Jejomar Binay, lost his bid for the mayoral post to the Vice President Jejomar Binay's only son.

In 2001, former Vice Mayor Edu Manzano ran an unsuccessful campaign for mayor against Jejomar Binay Sr, who won by a landslide.

In 1998, ex-Vice Mayor Arturo “Toro” Yabut lost to VP Binay’s wife, Dr Elenita Binay.

While Peña clarified that his discernment is still ongoing, he boasted about his “major” accomplishments as acting mayor of Makati – projects that, a councilor allied with the Binays said, started during the term of Mayor Junjun.

A little over a month ago, Peña was sworn in as acting mayor following a 6-month preventive suspension order the Ombudsman issued against Mayor Binay over an allegedly overpriced science high school. The mayor has asked the Court of Appeals to stop his suspension. –

Mara Cepeda

Mara Cepeda writes about politics and women’s rights for Rappler. She covers the House of Representatives and the Office of the Vice President. Got tips? Send her an email at or shoot her a tweet @maracepeda.