By EDWIN IYO
IF he decides to run for Cagayan de Oro mayor in next year’s elections, it would be on his own terms and not because he was challenged into seeking the city’s top post.
This was the gist of Misamis Oriental Gov. Yevgeny Vincente Emano’s response on Thursday when this paper pressed him for comment on Mayor Oscar Moreno’s “invitation” for him to run for Cagayan de Oro mayor in the 2019 elections.
The same day, Emano’s father, Vicente, said his group was “accepting” Moreno’s challenge but then added that the decision would still have to come from his son.
The governor said he was considering the prospects of launching a mayoral campaign in the city. But if he makes a decision to run for mayor, a public office his father held for over a decade, Emano said it would be because he wants to serve people, “labi na pobre, dili tungod sa hagit ni bisan kinsa labi na sa iya (Moreno) nga nga gi-dismiss sa ombudsman.”
On Monday, the interior department served a dismissal and disqualification order by the Office of the Ombudsman against Moreno in connection with a graft case. By Wednesday afternoon, the Court of Appeals released a resolution that, in effect, invalidated the service of the ombudsman’s order by the interior department because that case is among 24 consolidated cases on appeal and covered by a November 2017 writ of prelimary injunction.
Emano said, “If the people want me to run and need my services, I might consider it, and if the Padayon Pilipino will allow me.”
The governor however spoke of the possibility that his father would run for mayor again, adding that he still needs to do “a lot of things in the province especially in fixing the mess he (Moreno) left behind.”
Before his successful 2013 mayoral campaign in the city, Moreno was governor of Misamis Oriental, a province he led for three consecutive office terms or for nine years.
“My father is very capable if he still wants to run again,” he said.
The 76-year old former governor and mayor suffered two consecutive defeats in the hands of Moreno. In 2013, Moreno unseated him; in the 2016 elections, the elder Emano ranked far second in the hotly contested and bitter three-cornered mayoral race here that included the then congressman Rufus Rodriguez as one of Moreno’s challengers.