BY GLENDA SOLOGASTOA
ILOILO City – It’s a clean sweep for the group of reelectionists Cong. Jerry Treñas and Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog in the mid-term elections.
One hour and a half after voting officially closed last night, supporters of the two started setting off firecrackers in celebration, confident of their candidates’ “landslide win.”
By 10 p.m., it also became clear that the rest of their candidates for vice mayor and councilors also won.
Over DyFM Bombo Radyo, Treñas thanked all their supporters.
It was what their supporters were all waiting to hear as early as 8:30 p.m. when practically all partial unofficial results from clustered precincts reported by various local radio stations and Rappler.com – an online news group accredited by the Commission on Elections to access real-time data from its Transparency Server – showed Treñas and Mabilog leaving rivals biting the dust.
Treñas’ rival is former congressman Raul Gonzalez Jr. while Mabilog’s challenger is businessman Rommel Ynion.
“This is the first time in the city’s political history that one group swept the elections,” said Treñas.
The congressman said the election results only proved that city residents have seen and appreciate the kind of public service that he and his group have rendered.
Treñas assured the public of more progress.
Supporters of Treñas and Mabilog reveled on Facebook.
“This is what we have expected. Congrats JPM. Please continue to drive Iloilo City towards a prosperous future,” posted supporter Jayson Hierro.
Through his political liaison officer Jeffrey Celiz, Mabilog said his win is the victory of the Ilonggo people who have” come together and collectively expressed their will to uphold the dignity and respectability of public office.”
“This is a strong statement of outright rejection of the political bankruptcy of discredited political pretenders,” said Celiz.
As of 10:18 p.m., partial unofficial results showed Mabilog garnering 94,885 votes as against Ynion’s 44,2876. Treñas had 89,782 votes while Gonzalez had 45,848.
Mabilog’s running mate, reelectionist Vice Mayor Jose Espinosa III, had 71,480 while Ynion’s running mate, Jeffrey Ganzon, had 60,959.
“Thank you, Lord for giving us the right leader to lead our beloved city…congrats Mayor Jed,” wrote another supporter, Anthony de los Santos.
Political observers said Gonzalez and Ynion, at the most, would only get one fourth of the total votes cast.
The strong and organized political machinery of Treñas and Mabilog delivered the votes, while the Gonzalez-Ynion organization collapsed, they said.
On the eve of the elections and in the crucial hours before voting precincts opened at 7 a.m. yesterday, Gonzalez-Ynion barangay leaders felt neglected and started jumping ship, political observers said.
Last night, Ynion said he respects the decision “of my fellow Ilonggos.”
“Let’s be graceful in defeat. I guess they are not ready for change,” the businessman said.
Ynion indicated this election may not be the last that Ilonggos will hear and see him.
“The fight goes on. I hope the people will see the truth in the long run. On my part, I treat this as a valuable lesson. This is my tuition fee. I will always cherish those opportunities to speak before thousands of people. I would have loved to serve Iloilo. But I guess Iloilo is not ready yet,” said Ynion.
Treñas and Mabilog are with the Liberal Party (LP) while Gonzalez and Ynion carried the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) banner.
Twelve of the Top 15 slots for the Sangguniang Panlungsod were also dominated by the teammates of Treñas and Mabilog.
Only 12 will be able to sit in the City Council.
As of 9:58 p.m., the following entered the Top 15 posts:
* Tupas, Lex
* Baronda, Love Jam
* Gonzales, Jason
* Alim, Joshua
* Acap, Lyndon
* Treñas, Jay
* Peñaredondo, Ed
* Zulueta, Inday Lee
* Parcon, Armand
* Gerochi, Boots
* Agado, Rodel
* Nava, Plaridel
* Ganzon, Gerald
* Malabor, Mandrie
* Gonzalez, Doc Gold
The last three are with the Gonzalez-Ynion team./PN