LIST: Political clans, powerful figures among 2019 party-list nominees

Jodesz Gavilan
LIST: Political clans, powerful figures among 2019 party-list nominees
(UPDATED) At least 46 party-list groups participating in the 2019 polls have at least one nominee linked to a political clan or a powerful figure in the country

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – The composition of party-list groups seeking to join the House of Representatives has long been the object of scrutiny in the lead up to the elections. 

The 1987 Philippine Constitution states that 20% of House seats are allotted for nominees of party-list groups. The rosters of party-list representatives in previous Congresses had been hit for being recycled lists of people already in power.  

In fact, according to election watchdog Kontra Daya, “nearly half” of the 134 groups joining the 2019 elections do not represent the marginalized sectors.  

But in 2013, the Supreme Court upheld what it deemed was the Constitution’s intent: that the party list is not intended for marginalized sectors only. 

“National parties or organizations and regional parties or organizations do not need to organize along sectoral lines and do not need to represent ‘any marginalized and underrepresented’ sector,” the decision read. (READ: Fixing the party list)

Rappler found that at least 46 party-list groups participating in the 2019 polls that have at least one nominee are linked to a political clan or a powerful figure in the country.

In total, there are at least 65 nominees who are either members of powerful political families, have links to either a government official (incumbent and former), or have a relative also running for office. 

The chart below shows the network of these 65 nominees of party-list groups. The blue circles represent the nominees while the yellow ones indicate the political or public figures they are connected to. Hover over each point to see their links and other relevant information.

Who are these nominees? Below are their connections and backgrounds. 

Peter Anthony Abaya
Kabayan Party-list 2nd nominee

Peter Abaya has held various government positions in the past, including being undersecretary of the Department of Energy and the Office of the President under Gloria Macapagal Arroyo. He is the brother of former representative and transportation secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya and son of former representative Plaridel Abaya. The elder Abaya is also running to represent YACAP Party-list in the 2019 polls.

Alberto D. Pacquiao
OFW Family Club Party-list 1st nominee

BROTHERS. Senator Manny Pacquiao joins his brother Bobby and 2 others as they file their certificates of acceptance of nominees under the OFW Family Club. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Alberto “Bobby” Pacquiao is the brother of Senator Manny Pacquiao and has been involved in politics since 2013. He has served as barangay (village) councilor and in 2016, became a councilor in General Santos City. He worked as a professional boxer like his brother prior to joining government.

Shernee Abubakar Tan
Kusug Tausug Party-list 1st nominee

Shernee A. Tan is a member of the powerful Tan family of Sulu in Mindanao. She is the youngest daughter of former Sulu governor Abdusakur M. Tan and sister of incumbent Sulu governor Abdusakur Tan II and Maimbung Mayor Samier Tan. Her mother, Hadja Nurunisah Abubakar-Tan, is vice governor of Sulu.

Ciara Ana G. Sotto
Luntiang Pilipinas Party-list 2nd nominee

Ciara Sotto is the daughter of Senate President Vicente Sotto III. Her siblings are Quezon City 3rd District Councilor Gian and 6th District Councilor Lala Sotto. 

Montserrat T. Romulo
Luntiang Pilipinas Party-list 3rd nominee

Montserrat Romulo is a member of the influential Romulo clan. She is the daughter of former senator and foreign affairs secretary Alberto Romulo. She is also the sister of Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo Puyat and former Pasig representative Roman Romulo. She had previously run for Congress.

Jericho Jonas B. Nograles
PBA Party-list 1st nominee

Jericho Nograles is a member of the powerful Nograles clan of Davao. He is the son of former House speaker Prospero Nograles and brother of representative and Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles.  

Margarita Ignacia B. Nograles
PBA Party-list 3rd nominee

Margarita Ignacia B. Nograles is the daughter of former House speaker Prospero Nograles. She is also the sister of PBA Representative Jericho Nograles and representative and Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles. 

ANOTHER RUN. Evangelist Eddie Villanueva accompanies members of CIBAC at the Comelec. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Eduardo C. Villanueva
CIBAC Party-list 1st nominee

Jesus is Lord (JIL) founder Eddie Villanueva is the father of Senator Joel Villanueva. His daughter Eleanor Tugna is the incumbent Bocaue, Bulacan mayor while his son Eduardo Jr served also as mayor for 4 terms. The elder Villanueva ran for president in 2004 and 2010. 

Ramp Nielsen S. Uy
Ako An Bisaya Party-list 1st nominee

Ramp Uy is a member of the influential Uy clan in Samar. He also served as vice governor of Northern Samar, elected as the “youngest” in the region in 2010. 

Rodolfo T. Tuazon
Ako An Bisaya Party-list 2nd nominee

Rodolfo Tuazon is a member of the influential Tuazon family. He served as 3-term representative of Samar 1st District from 1992-2001.

Eduardo K. Veloso
Ako An Bisaya Party-list 3rd nominee

Eduardo Veloso is a former Leyte representative who was indicted in 2017 in relation to the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) or pork barrel scam. He’s also allegedly a member of the “Gang of Five” which reportedly received P2 million to delay a congressional inquiry into the collusion of telco networks Globe and Smart over the reduction of free text messages, according to a  Newsbreak piece published in 2001. 

Florencio Gabriel G. Noel
An Waray Party-list 1st nominee

Florencio Noel is the husband of former Malabon representative Josephine Lacson-Noel.  

Marie Grace M. Evardone
An Waray Party-list 2nd nominee

Grace Evadone is the wife of incumbent Eastern Samar Representative Ben Evardone who is running for governor.

ANOTHER STINT. Former Quezon City representative Mike Defensor, along with Emmanuel Andal and Adorlito Ginete, file their certificates of acceptance of nomination under Anakalusugan. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Michael T. Defensor
Anakalusugan Party-list 1st nominee

Mike Defensor is the son of former Quezon City representative Matias Defensor Jr. His brother John is running for QC 3rd district councilor. The younger Defensor himself also served as QC councilor from 1991 to 1995, and as 3rd district representative from 1995 to 2001, before joining the Cabinet of former president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.

Jose J. Teves Jr
TGP Party-list 1st nominee

Jose “Bong” Teves Jr is a former vice governor of Catanduanes. 

Edgardo Dizon Pamintuan
ABEKA Party-list 1st nominee

Incumbent Angeles City Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan is a member of the influential Pamintuan clan in Pampanga and had served as vice governor in the late 1980s. His son and namesake Edgardo Jr also serves in the city council. The younger Pamintuan is also running for city vice mayor.

Jose T. Panganiban Jr
ANAC-IP Party-list 1st nominee

Incumbent Anac-IP representative Jose Panganiban Jr is the husband of incumbent Angandanan, Isabela mayor Lourdes Segarra Panganiban. 

Lourdes S. Panganiban
ANAC-IP Party-list 2nd nominee

Lourdes Panganiban is the incumbent mayor of Angandanan, Isabela and wife of present Anac-IP representative Jose Panganiban.

Reynaldo T. Panganiban Sr
ANAC-IP Party-list 7th nominee 

Reynaldo Panganiban Sr is the brother of incumbent Anac-IP representative Jose Panganiban Jr.

Narciso D. Santiago III
SINAG Party-list 1st nominee

Narciso D. Santiago III is the son of the late senator Miriam Defensor Santiago. His father is the current presidential adviser on revenue enhancement, a post he also held under the Arroyo administration.

Chito Valmocina
SBP Party-list 2nd nominee

Chito Valmocina is the barangay captain of Barangay Holy Spirit in Quezon City. He is also the husband of QC 2nd District Councilor Estrella Valmocina.

Vicente Eric D. Belmonte Jr
SBP Party-list 3rd nominee

Vicente Belmonte Jr is a member of the influential Belmonte clan. He is the nephew of former House speaker Feliciano “Sonny” Belmonte Jr. His wife Irene is incumbent Quezon City 4th District Councilor.

FOR MOTHERS. Inang Bayan Party list nominees led by Gina de Venecia. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Maria Georgina P. de Venecia
Inang Mahal Party-list 1st nominee

Gina de Venecia is the wife of former House speaker Jose de Venecia Jr. She previously served as Pangasinan 4th district representative from 2010 to 2016. Her son, Christopher de Venecia, replaced her in the position in 2016 and is seeking reelection in 2019.

Acmad M. Tomawis
ALIF Party-list 1st nominee

Acmad Tomawis is the former ALIF party-list representative, serving from 2007 to 2014. 

Agakhan M. Tomawis
ALIF Party-list 4th nominee

Agakhan Tomawis is the son of Acmad Tomawis. 

Tricia Nicole Q. Velasco-Catera
MATA Party-list 1st nominee

Tricia Nicole Velasco-Catera is the daughter of retired Supreme Court justice Presbitero Velasco and Torrijos, Marinduque mayor Lorna Velasco. Her brother is incumbent Marinduque Representative Lord Allan Jay Velasco. 

Pearl Grace F. Oaminal
MATA Party-list 2nd nominee

Pearl Grace Oaminal is the wife of incumbent Misamis Occidental 2nd district Representative Henry Oaminal.

Rodolfo B. Albano
LPGMA Party-list 1st nominee

Rodolfo Albano Jr is a member of Isabela’s Albano clan, serving as representative at the House of Representatives. He is the father of incumbent Isabela 1st District Representative Rodolfo Albano III. 

Conrado M. Estrella III
Abono Party-list 1st nominee

Incumbent Abono Representative Conrado Estrella III is part of the Estrella political clan of Pangasinan and served as the province’s 6th district representative from 1987 to 1995. He is the grandson of the late Pangasinan governor Conrado Estrella Sr and brother of former Abono representative Robert Raymond Estrella.

Vini Nola A. Ortega
Abono Party-list 2nd nominee

Incumbent Abono Representative Vini Nola Ortega is linked to the powerful Ortegan clan by marriage. She is the wife of La Union Governor Francisco “Pacoy” Ortega and daughter-in-law of former governor Manuel “Manoling” Ortega.

Felix V. Ople
Alay Buhay Party-list 2nd nominee

Incumbent Bulacan provincial board member Felix Ople is the son of the late Senate president Blas Ople.

MANILA'S OWN. Representative Lito Atienza joins members of Buhay Party-list group. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Jose L. Atienza Jr
Buhay Party-list 1st nominee

Incumbent Buhay representative Jose “Lito” Atienza is the former long-time mayor of the city of Manila. His children have held several government positions: his sons served as city councilors – Ali from 2013 to 2016, Kim from 1995 to 2004 – while his daughter Arlene Maile is incumbent 3rd district councilor.

Rene M. Velarde
Buhay Party-list 2nd nominee

Incumbent Buhay representative Rena Velarde is the son of Brother Mike Velarde, leader of the influential El Shaddai group.

Francis S. Cusi
Partido Sandugo Party-list 1st nominee

Francis Cusi is the son of Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi.

Rudys Caesar G. Fariñas I
Probinsyano Ako Party-list 1st nominee

Rudys Fariñas is the son of former House majority leader Rodolfo Fariñas of the influential political clan in Ilocos Norte. His sister, Ilocos Norte 1st district board member Ria Cristina Fariñas, is seeking to replace her father in Congress.

Lira R. Fuester-Fariñas
Probinsyano Ako Party-list 2nd nominee

Lira Fariñas is a member of the influential Ilocano clan through her husband Jami who is the son of the late Laoag vice mayor Michael Fariñas. Her mother-in-law, Chevylle Fariñas, is the incumbent Laoag mayor. 

Eulogio R. Magsaysay
AVE Party-list 1st nominee

Former AVE representative Eugelio Magsaysay is a member of the Magsaysay clan. He is the son of the late Senator Genaro Magsaysay, the brother of former president Ramon Magsaysay.

Emelita A. Alvarez
METRO Party-list 1st nominee

Emelita Apostol Alvarez is the estranged wife of former House speaker Pantaleon Alvarez. She formerly headed the Congressional Spouses Foundation Incorporated. Her daughter Ana is the 1st nominee of the 1-Alliance Advocating Autonomy Party.

FROM DISTRICT TO PARTY-LIST GROUP. Leyte Representative Yedda Marie Romualdez (in white blouse) leads other nominees of Tingog Sinirangan. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Yedda Marie K. Romualdez
Tingog Sirinangan Party-list 1st nominee

Incumbent Leyte 1st District Representative Yedda Marie Romualdez is linked to the influential Romualdez clan through her husband former representative Martin Romualdez who lost his Senate bid in 2016. The two are both seeking to join the House of Representatives as Martin is aiming to take over Yedda’s seat. 

Jocelyn P. Tulfo
ACT-CIS Party-list 2nd nominee

Jocelyn Tulfo is the wife of radio personality Raffy Tulfo. She is the sister-in-law of former tourism secretary Wanda Tulfo Teo.

King George Leandro Antonio V. Collantes
CONSLA Party-list 1st nominee

King George Leandro Antonio Collantes is the son of former Batangas 3rd district representative Nelson “Sonny” Collantes. His mother is incumbent representative Maria Theresa Collantes who is seeking reelection. 

Kirsten Michelle T. Ferriol
Kalinga Party-list 4th nominee

Kirsten is related to incumbent Kalinga representative Abigail Ferriol-Pascual through her husband Sam Ferriol.

Arturo C. Ferriol Jr
Kalinga Part-list 5th nominee

Arturo C. Ferriol is related of incumbent Kalinga representative Abigail Ferriol-Pascual whose father is Pentecostal Missionary Church of Christ Bishop Arturo Ferriol.

INFLUENTIAL CLAN. AAMBIS-OWA partylist Representative Sharon Garin in her office. File photo by LeAnne Jazul/Rappler

Sharon S. Garin
AAMBIS-OWA Party-list 1st nominee

Incumbent AAMBIS-OWA representative Sharon Garin is a member of the influential Garin clan of Iloilo. She is the daughter of former lawmaker and incumbent Guimbal Mayor Oscar Garin Sr and San Joaquin Mayor Ninfa Serag-Garin.

She is also the sister of imcumbent Iloilo 1st District Representative Oscar “Richard” Garin Jr and sister-in-law of former Iloilo representative and health secretary Janette Garin.

Hernan G. Biron Jr
AAMBIS-OWA Party-list 2nd nominee

Hernan Biron Jr is part of the Biron political clan in Iloilo. His family – including his father, former Barotac Nuevo mayor Hernan Biron Sr, and brother, incumbent representative Ferjenel Biron – has held Iloilo’s 4th District representative seat for many years. His brother is seeking the gubernatioral seat of Iloilo. 

Jimmy L. Garin
AAMBIS-OWA Party-list 5th nominee

Jimmy Garin is the nephew of former lawmaker Oscar Garin Sr and cousin of incumbent Representatives Richard and Sharon.

Kathleen C. Briones
AGAP Party-list 2nd nominee

Kathleen Briones is the daughter of former Agap representative Nicanor Briones, who ran for Batangas governor in 2016 but lost.

Mary Grace T. Rodriguez
ABAMIN Party-list 1st nominee

Mary Grace Rodriguez is the wife of incumbent Cagayan de Oro 2nd District Representative Maximo Rodriguez Jr, who once represented Abante Mindanao in Congress prior to running for a legislative district position.

Ma Victoria V. Umali
A Teacher Party-list 2nd nominee

Ma Victoria Umali is a member of the Umali clan from Oriental Mindoro. Her brother Alfonso is the incumbent governor after he ended his 3-term stint as legislator while another brother Reynaldo is the incumbent Oriental Mindoro 2nd District Representative.

Carol Jayne B. Lopez
YACAP Party-list 1st nominee

Former representative Carol Lopez is the sister of incumbent YACAP Representative Benhur Lopez Jr.

Plaridel M. Abaya
YACAP Party-list 2nd nominee

Plaridel Abaya was a former representative of Cavite’s 1st district, serving 3 terms from 1995 to 2004. He is the father of former representative and transportation secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya and Kabayan second nominee Peter Anthony Abaya. 

Benhur B. Lopez Jr
YACAP Party-list 3rd nominee

Incumbent YACAP Representative Benhur Lopez is the brother of co-nominee and former representative Carol Lopez.

Justin Caesar Anthony D. Batocabe
AKO Bicol Party-list 2nd nominee

Justin Batocabe is the eldest son of slain AKO Bicol representative Rodel Batocabe. Justin’s mother Gertie Duran-Batocabe is running for Daraga town mayor. 

Marjorie Ann A. Teodoro
Ating Koop Party-list 1st nominee

Marjorie Teodoro is the wife of incumbent Marikina Mayor Marcelino Teodoro.

Maria Divina Gracia M. Mangudadatu
Aleng Entrep Party-list 1st nominee

Maria Mangudadatu is part of the influential Mangudadatu political clan of Maguindanao. She is the sister-in-law of incumbent Governor Esmail Mangudadatu.

Harlin Neil J. Abayon III
Aangat Tayo Party-list 1st nominee

Incumbent Aangat Tayo Representative Harlin Abayon III is the son of former Samar 1st distrct representative and governor Harlin Jr and Aangat Tayo former representative Daryl Grace Abayon. 

Milliscent Ann M. Abayon
Aangat Tayo Party-list 4th nominee

Milliscent Abayon is the wife of Harlin Neil Abayon III, incumbent Aangat Tayo representative. 

Ducielle Marie Suarez-Cardema
Duterte Youth Party-list 1st nominee

Ducielle Cardema is the wife of National Youth Commission Chairperson Ronald Cardema.  

Javier Miguel L. Benitez
Abang Lingkod Party-list 6th nominee

Javier Miguel Benitez is the son of incumbent Negros Occidental 3rd District Representative Alfredo “Albee” Benitez.

Michaelina M. Antonio
Agbiag Party-list 1st nominee

Incumbent Agbiag Representative Michaelina Antonio is the wife of former representative Patricio Antonio. 

Raymond Democrito C. Mendoza
TUCP Party-list 1st nominee

Incumbent TUCP Representative Raymond Mendoza is the husband of incumbent Cotabato Governor Emmylou Taliño-Mendoza.

Annie C. Andanar
FFP Party-list 1st nominee

Annie Andanar is the wife of Wencelito Andanar, President Rodrigo Duterte’s special envoy to Malaysia, and stepmother of Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar.

Michael Edgar Y. Aglipay
DIWA Party-list 1st nominee

Michael Edgar Aglipay is the son of former PNP chief Edgar Aglipay. He is also the brother of Diwa Representative and Justice Undersecretary Emmeline Aglipay Villar, making him the brother-in-law of Public Works Secretary Mark Villar.

Rafael Louis J. Alunan
1-P Party-list 1st nominee

Rafael Alunan is the son of former interior secretary Raffy Alunan, who is also running for senator in the 2019 polls. 

Ana Emelita A. Alvarez
1AAAP Party-list 1st nominee

Ana Emelita Alvarez is the daughter of former House speaker Pantaleon Alvarez. Her mother Emelita is running as METRO representative.

Mohammed Hussein P. Pangandaman
AA-Kasosyo Partylist 2nd nominee

Former Lanao del Sur 1st district representative Mohammed Pangandaman is the son of former Agrarian secretary Nasser Pangandaman and brother of Nasser Jr who served as Maslu town mayor from 2007 to 2016. – 

Jodesz Gavilan

Jodesz Gavilan is a writer and researcher for Rappler and its investigative arm, Newsbreak. She covers human rights and also hosts the weekly podcast Newsbreak: Beyond the Stories. She joined Rappler in 2014 after obtaining her journalism degree from the University of the Philippines.