Jalosjos brothers lose in Sibugay polls

IPIL, Zamboanga Sibugay (MindaNews / 15 May) – A major upset loss struck the Jalosjos camp in Zamboanga Sibugay after the Liberal Party’s (LP) candidates for governor and second congressional district representative dominated election results, leaving behind incumbents Gov. Rommel Jalosjos and Rep. Romeo Jalosjos Jr.

Lawyer Roy Prule Ediza, provincial election supervisor, proclaimed the winners in Sibugay’s election race around 12:20 a.m. Wednesday. Lawyer Wilter Palma won as governor and Dr. Ann Hofer as representative of the second district.

Palma and Hofer stood against the Jalosjos administration and started to establish their presence last year under the political party of President Benigno Simeon Aquino III.

The LP-Sibugay camp gained momentum when issues of corruption, mismanagement of funds and extortion hit the Jalosjos administration late last year. The Jalosjos brothers vehemently denied the accusations.

Palma garnered a total of 118,575 votes and gained a lead of about 4,000 votes over Rommel Jalosjos.

Hofer also got an overwhelming 78,100 votes compared to her rival’s almost 60,000.

The session hall of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP), which the Provincial Board of Canvassers (PBOC) occupied, was filled with LP supporters wearing yellow, and flooded the rest of the capitol complex with a “sea of yellow.”

Other winning candidates are lawyers Rey Andre Olegario for vice governor and Belma Cabilao as representative of the first district. This is Olegario’s third term and a fresh start for Cabilao under the Alliance of Parties for Progress (APP), a political party founded by Zamboanga Peninsula’s kingpin, Romeo “Nonong” Jalosjos.

Rommel and Romeo Jr. gained political strength in Zamboanga Sibugay starting in 2010 when they thumped the ruling Hofers, who continued their dominance for almost a decade.

Hofer, former second district representative, was defeated by Rommel Jalosjos in the 2010 gubernatorial race.