3-way fight looms in Misamis Oriental

CAGAYAN DE ORO (MindaNews / 02 October) — A three-way fight looms for the gubernatorial post in the province of Misamis Oriental.

Three political figures – Cagayan de Oro Mayor Oscar Moreno, Rep. Juliet Uy of the 2nd District of Misamis Oriental, and Gingoog City Vice Mayor Peter Unabia—have all signified they will run for governor of the province.

Photo courtesy of the Misamis Oriental Provincial Information Office Facebook Page

All have proven bailiwicks and political organizations to back up their campaigns.

Moreno who is now on his third term as Cagayan de Oro city mayor, was Governor of Misamis Oriental from 2004 to 20013 and its 1st district Representative from 1998 to 2004.

Moreno is running with Ariel Hernandez, a new face in the local political scene.

Hernandez is the head of the Joint Normalization Committee (JNC) of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process, one of the peace mechanisms between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Force.

The 50-year-old Hernandez hails from Gingoog City, is an NGO organizer and one of the founding member of the Cagayan de Oro-based Balay Mindanaw Foundation.

The political career of the 71-year-old Moreno started in 1998 when he won as Representative of the 1st district of Misamis Oriental.

He gained fame when he became a member of the prosecution panel of the 2000-2001 impeachment trial of former President Joseph Estrada.

Moreno was reelected in 2001 and instead of aiming for a third term in the 2004 elections, opted to run for Governor of Misamis Oriental and won. He was reelected in 2007 and in 20100, serving until 2013, and from 2013 has been mayor of this city.

The 60-year-old Unabia, on the other hand not a  new face in the political landscape of Misamis Oriental.

Unabia started his political career when he won as provincial board member. He ran for Representative of the 1st District of Misamis Oriental  and won in 2010, 2013 and 2016, serving until 2019.

He slid down in 2019 and handily won the vice mayoralty of Gingoog, a component city of Misamis Oriental.

Unabia’s running mate is incumbent Misamis Oriental Vice Governor Jeremy Jonahmar “Jigjag” Pelaez, who won the elections in 2019 under the United Nationalist Alliance Party.

Rep. Juliette Uy, representative of the 2nd district of Misamis Oriental since 2013, will run under the National Unity Party and have former vice governor Joey Pelaez as her running mate.

Pelaez is the older brother of the incumbent Vice Governor.  (Froilan Gallardo / MindaNews)