Still all in the family: 16 of 26 govs reelected; 12 provinces elect exec-legislative family teams

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/19 May) – Sixteen of 26 governors in Mindanao were reelected while 12 provinces elected members of the same families to both executive and legislative posts:  three father and son teams, two brother and sister teams, three teams of brothers, a team of bother and two sisters, a wife and husband team; a team of cousins and a team of son and parents.

Based on records from the Provincial Board of Canvassers, seven governors-elect will be serving as governor for the first time but they have served previously in other posts or are sons of  governors “graduating” at the end of nine years on June 30. Of 18 who sought reelection, two are not returning to the Capitol. But two former governors are returning to their post after  spending three years in another elective post.

Six  others won even before the ballots were cast on May 13: they ran unopposed.

Among the family teams elected, the Dimaporos of Lanao del Norte and the Plazas of Agusan del Sur — the longest-surviving political clans in Mindanao in half a century — won again the gubernatorial post and their two congressional districts will again be represented by siblings in the case of the Plazas, and  in Lanao del Norte, by parents.

Governor Mohammad Khalid Dimaporo was elected to a third term in Lanao del Norte while his parents Imelda and Abdullah, both former governors and representatives, will be representing Congress in the first and second districts. In 2010, the governor’s sister, Fatima Aliah, was elected to represent the second district, a post held by their father Abdullah from 1987 to 1992 and 2001 to 2010 and will be held again in 2013 to 2016. Imelda was governor from 1998 to 2007 and was elected to the 1st district in 2010 to 2013.

In Agusan del Sur, it will still be a Plaza-Plaza-Plaza team with Governor Adolph Edward Plaza voted to a fourth term (after 2001-2007 and 2010-2013)  his sisters Ma. Valentina and Evelyn Plaza-Mellana representing the two districts. Valentina was governor from 2007 to 2010.

The ten other executive-legislative family teams were elected in Agusan del Norte, Bukidnon, Camiguin, Davao del Norte, Davao del Sur, Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao, Sultan Kudarat, Tawi-tawi and Zamboanga del Sur.

Two provinces also elected family teams for Governor and Vice Governor – Dinagat Islands and Sulu, while three provinces elected family teams for Vice Governor and Representative – Compostela Valley, Misamis Occidental and Sarangani.

Brothers and sisters, fathers and sons

In Agusan del Norte, Rep. Ma. Angelica Rosedell Amante swapped posts with brother-Governor, Erlpe John. Both are completing their third terms by June 30. By then, Ms Amante will have returned to the gubernatorial post she held from 1995 to 2004 while her brother Erlpe, governor from 2004 to 2013, will be serving as representative.The siblings ran unopposed.

Bukidnon, Camiguin and Davao del Norte elected father and son teams. Bukidnon’s  returning governor Jose Ma. Zubiri, incumbent Vice Governor, was voted to a fourth term (after 2001 to 2010) and  Jose Ma. Zubiri III, elected to a third term. Zubiri served as Representative of the 3rd district from 1987 to 1998. His son Juan Miguel, served that district from 1998 to 2007. Juan Miguel was elected Senator in 2007 but hounded by charges of having cheated to win, resigned in August 2011, his seat taken over by Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel who won in this year’s Senate race. Juan Miguel ran but lost his bid to win a Senate seat.

By June 30, 2016, the Zubiris will have served the third district of Bukidnon for nine terms  or 29 years – the seat bequeathed from father to son to another son. The Zubiri patriarch swapped posts with incumbent Governor Alex Calingasan, now vice governor-elect.

Like the Zubiris, the Romualdos have also dominated Camiguin’s politics, the lone district seat in their hands also from 1987 to 2016 —  from the patriarch Pedro Romualdo to son Jurdin Jesus and back to Pedro who was seeking reelection when he died last month. A grandson, Xavier Jesus, son of the incumbent governor Jurdin Jesus, won the seat. Jurdin Jesus became governor in 2007 after his father’s three terms from 1998 to 2007.

Fifth term

In Davao del Norte, Rodofo del Rosario won a fifth term as governor (after 1998-2004; 2007-2013). The two congressional districts are presently held by Del Rosario’s son Anthony and nephew Antonio Floirendo Lagdameo, Jr., Antony del Rosario from 2010 and Lagdameo from 2007. Like the Zubiris and Romualdos, the Del Rosario-Floireno clan has been representing the third and later second district since 1987.

The Del Rosario patriarch was representative from 1987 to 1998. Antonio Floirendo, Jr., his nephew, served from 1998 to 2007.

Davao del Sur and Lanao del Sur have brothers  for Governor and Representative:  Governor-elect Claude Bautista and Franklin, representative of the second district  of Davao del Sur and Mamintal Adiong, Jr., elected to a third term as governor and his brother Ansaruddin Adiong, representative of the fist district. Governor Adiong’s cousin, Pangalian Balindong was also elected to a third term  as representative of the second district.

In Davao del Sur, Governor-elect Bautista, representative of the second district of Davao del Sur from 2001 to 2007,  will be serving  as governor for the first time, and his brother Franklin, who is serving a fourth term (previous terms: 1998-2001; 2007 to 2013) as representative.  Both brothers served as  mayor of their hometown, Malita,  Franklin from 1988 to 1998, Claude from 1998 to 2001. Another brother, Benjamin, Jr. was  Governor from 2002 to 2007 and is incumbent mayor of Malita.The Bautista’s father, Benjamin, Sr., was representative from 1987 to 1998.

Like the Zubiris, Romualdos and the Del Rosario-Floirendo clan, the Bautistas will have been representing the second district of Davao del Sur for 29 years by 2016.

Brothers, cousins, brother and sister, husband and wife

Joining the team of brothers in the executive and legislative posts is the team of Maguindanao Governor Esmael Mangudadatu and his brother, Representative-elect Zahid Mangudadatu. Mangudadatu was reelected while this is the first congressional term of Zahid, mayor of Pandag.

In Sultan Kudarat, Suharto “Teng” Mangudadatu, the Maguindanao governor’s cousin, was elected to a third term while his brother-in-law Raden Sakaluran was elected to a second term in Congress, representing the first district.  Sakaluran is married to Mangudadatu’s sister, Ruth, who ran unopposed for mayor of Lutayan town, the Mangudadatus’ hometown in Sultan Kudarat province.

In Tawi-tawi, the governor-elect is Nurbert Sahali, mayor of Panglima Sugala town and son of third-term governor Sadikul Sahali. His sister, Ruby Sahali was elected representative of the lone district.

In Zamboanga del Sur, Governor Antonio Cerilles was elected to a second term while wife Aurora was also elected to a second term as representative of the second district. The incumbent governor served as Representative from 1987 to 1998 and 2004 to 2010 while wife Aurora served as governor from 2001 to 2010 and representative from 1998 to 2001.

In Dinagat Islands and Sulu,  it’s a mother-son and father-son team,  respectively, for governor and vice governor.

In Dinagat Islands, Governor Glenda Ecleo was elected to a second term while son Benglen, incumbent provincial administrator, was elected vice governor.

In Sulu, Abdusakur Tan II is the incoming governor while his father, the incumbent governor Abdusakur Tan, is his vice governor. The elder Tan served as governor from 1996 to 2001 and from 2007 to 2013.

In Compostela Valley, Misamis Occidental and Sarangani, the vice governor s and representatives are also father and daughter and husband  and wife teams. In Compostela, the Vice Governor-elect is Manuel Zamora while his daughter Maria Carmen Zamora-Apsay won a second term unopposed in the first district.

In Misamis Occidental, Vice Governor-elect is Virginia Almonte while her husband, Jorge was elected to a second term as representative of the first district.

In Sarangani, first-time politician Jinkee Pacquiao won as Vice Governor while husband Emmanuel Pacquiao, the boxer, was elected to a second term, unopposed.


The 16 reelected governors are: Davao del Norte’s Rodolfo del Rosario (fifth term), Agusan del Sur’s Adolph Edward Plaza (fourth term), the following who will serve a third term:  Basilan’s Jum Akbar, Camiguin’s Jurdin Jesus Romualdo , Compostela Valley’s Arturo Uy, Davao Oriental’s Corazon Malanyaon, Lanao del Norte’s Mohammad Khalid Dimaporo, Lanao del Sur’s Mamintal Adiong, Jr, Sultan Kudarat’s Suharto Mangudadatu; and those who were elected to a second term: Dinagat’s Glenda Ecleo, Maguindanao’s Esmael “Toto” Mangudadatu, Misamis Occidental’s Herminia Ramiro,  North Cotabato’s Emmylou Talino-Mendoza, Surigao del Norte’s Sol Matugas, Surigao del Sur’s Johnny Pimentel, and Zamboganga del Sur’ Antonio Cerilles.

Two incumbents who sought reelection but lost are South Cotabato’s Arthur Pingoy and Zamboanga Sibugay’s Rommel Jalosjos.  Former Governor Daisy Avance-Fuentes was reelected South Cotabato governor while Wilter Palma was elected governor of Zamboanga Sibugay.

The seven first-term governors are Davao del Sur’s Claude Bautista, Misamis Oriental’s Yevgeny Emano, Sarangani’s Steven Chiongbian Solon, Sulu’s Abdusakur Tan II, Tawi-tawi’s Nurbert Sahali, Zamboanga del Norte’s Roberto Uy and Zamboanga Sibugay’s Palma.

Six won the gubernatorial post even before Monday’s polls, having run unopposed: Agusan del Norte’s Amane, Compostela Valley’s Uy, Davao del Norte’s del Rosario, Davao Oriental’s Malanyaon and Sarangani’s Solon. (Vanessa Almeda, Carolyn O. Arguillas, Keith Bacongco, Walter Balane, Ferdinandh Cabrera, Roel Catoto, Allen V. Estabillo, Froilan Gallardo, Violeta M. Gloria, Toto Lozano, Malu Manar, Erwin Mascarinas H. Ruby Thursday More, Marcos C. Mordeno, Bong Sarmiento and Bobby Timonera/MindaNews)