By NITZ ARANCON,
THE Commission on Elections (Comelec) proclaimed Mayor Oscar Moreno and other winners in Monday’s elections here last night.
Mayor Oscar Moreno, who received 157,815 votes from over 300 election precincts, was proclaimed past 8 pm at the session hall of the city council.
Moreno’s running mate, Vice Mayor Raineir Joaquin Uy and his father, Rep. Rolando Uy of the 1st District, were also proclaimed winners in Monday’s elections.
Proclaimed as winners in the race for city council seats in the 1st District were Edna Dahino, Jay Pascual, Roger Abaday, Zaldy Ocon, George Goking, Reuben Daba, and Romeo Calizo.
For the 2nd District, those proclaimed were Girlie Balaba, Maria Lourdes Gaane, Ian Mark Nacaya, Suzette Daba, Teodulfo Lao Jr., Enrico Salcedo, and Edgar Cabanlas.
Three other winners — congressman Rufus Rodriguez and councilors Lordan Suan and Jocelyn Rodriguez — were were scheduled to follow after Moreno’s group.
The proclamation of the winners came a day after Moreno and Rep. Rolando Uy separately filed motions to lower the threshold so the winning candidates could be proclaimed. Lawyer Ramil Acol, city elections officer and chair of the board of canvassers, said a 90-percent threshold must be reached so the winners could be proclaimed but the motions to lower it were approved.
As of 3:30 pm yesterday, the city board of canvassers was still working on the election returns. The canvassing work was delayed because of 14 “defective” SD cards for the vote-counting machines that needed to be reconfigured. The SD cards are needed to enable the electronic transmission of election returns.
The motions were filed at the time when the board has yet to complete their work on the election returns from 10 clustered precincts because of delays caused by the “defective” SD cards. The remaining clustered precincts represent about 11 thousand votes.
City hall spokesperson Maricel Rivera said the canvassing work was nearly completed with only five clustered precincts remaining as of 3:30 pm yesterday.
Acol, chairman of the city board of canvassers, earlier said the winning candidates would likely be proclaimed on Thursday.
Until last night, there was uncertainty on exactly when the winning candidates would be proclaimed.
As of 10:37 pm Tuesday, Rep. Uy was winning by a wide margin with 82,446 votes against former vice mayor Caesar Ian Acenas’s 23,328 and lawyer Gil Banaag’s 3,720.
In the race for the other congressional seat of Cagayan de Oro, former representative Rufus Rodriguez of the Padayon Pilipino-CDP coalition, registered an overwhelming lead of 80,337 votes over Councilor Yan Lan Lim’s 45,664 votes in the city’s second district as of Tuesday night.
Uy son Raineir Joaquin was also giving councilor Nadya Emano-Elipe a beating. As of Tuesday night, the younger Uy had 138,697 votes against Elipe’s 98,462 votes. Elipe ran for vice mayor as a replacement of her father, ex-mayor Vicente Emano, who died of pneumonia last week.
Acol said the petition of Rep. Uy was forwarded to the Comelec in Manila for decision immediately.
Rep. Uy’s group dominated this week’s elections. The group’s standard bearer, reelectionist Mayor Moreno, won by a wide margin against his strongest challenger, former Agriculture undersecretary Jose Gabriel La Viña.
Based on the ABS-CBN Halalan 2019 poll count, Moreno would serve a third and final term. Moreno garnered 153,708 votes compared to the 87,390 votes that La Vina had as of 8:22 pm Tuesday.
The reelectionist mayor ran under the banner of the administration PDP-Laban while La Vina, also a supporter of President Duterte, ran under the Padayon Pilipino-Centist Democratic Party coalition.
Election officials said 97.72 percent of the votes in Cagayan de Oro have been counted except for 14 precincts whose SD cards did not work as of Tuesday.
Misamis Oriental provincial election director Aleli Ramirez said at least 28 SD cards were found defective out of a total 1,275 SD cards distributed in the provinces and the two cities of Gingoog and Cagayan de Oro.
“This prevented us from proclaiming the winning candidates,” Ramirez said.
Ramirez said they had to ask Comelec Manila to retool the SD cards but given the small number of IT personnel, there have been some delays.
Meanwhile in Misamis Oriental, Gov. Yevgeny Vincente Emano, who is running for his third term under the Padayon Pilipino, received 246,140 votes against his opponent Julio Uy of the National Unity Party, who took 195,428 votes as of the partial and unofficial count as of Tuesday night.
In the first congressional district of Misamis Oriental, newcomer Christian Unabia defeated Vice Gov. Jose Mari Pelaez of the National Unity Party who received only 84,585 votes.
Misamis Oriental 2nd District Rep. Juliette Uy of the National Unity Party appeared to be clinching a third term when she garnered 157,995 votes over her opponent, Jose Benjamin Benaldo of Padayon Party, who received only 73,940 votes.