Pinol brothers dominate in North Cot elections

Gov. Emmanuel Piñol, who slid to the vice gubernatorial bid, was ahead of his  rivals with some 50,000 votes in the final and unofficial result of the counting conducted by the National Movement for Free Elections (Namfrel).

In the same counting by Namfrel, Pinol's brother, Bernardino, former provincial administrator, was also a sure winner in the second district congressional race, leaving behind some 30,000 votes against his close rivals. He was being contested by Senator Panfilo Lacsons' aide, Atty. Evaresto Gana, former Rep. Gregorio Andolana and North
provincial social welfare and development officer, Zaida Jubilan-Rensulat.

The other Pinol brothers, Efren and Joselito, were officially proclaimed by the Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Wednesday as duly elected mayors of the towns of Magpet and Mlang North Cotabato, respectively.

Political Dynasty

The governor had earlier explained that the Piñols were not building a political dynasty in the province saying that their "faith in politics depend on the people who will vote for [us] and believe in [our] capacity as leaders".

"We are not building a political dynasty. It's the people that judged and voted us. We simply presented our selves including the programs and our projects to them," he said.

The governor appealed to his political detractors to stop criticizing his family.

Good Governance

Piñol claimed his administration had helped changed the lives of his constituents "through transparent and good governance".

Before he was elected governor in 1998, he said North Cotabato belonged to the 50 poorest provinces. He said he was able to turn around the economy and in a survey conducted by the National Statistical Coordinating Board (NSCB) in 2006, the province climbed to the 29th slot in progressive provinces.

Governor Piñol attributed this improvement in the trust and confidence by the local and international investors.

Piñol pointed out that the entry of La Panday Fruits Inc., AJMR Company and Dole-Stanfilco which he said employed 80,000 workers in the towns of Matalam, President Roxas, Antipas and Arakan valley area.

"This is how the government works in our province. Good governance for us means work for our people especially those in the grassroots level," The governor stressed.