Vol. 1 Issue 5, May 2016, frontpage
All eight candidates for Sangguniang Bayan of Flora endorsed by the influential Iglesia Ni Cristo (INC) in the May 9 polls have made it to the local legislative council.
Joining Mayor-elect Rodolfo B. Juan and Vice Mayor-elect Jessica L. De San Jose in the Municipality’s new set of public officials are SB Members David O. Tabbaban Jr., Jessie R. Pascua, Vic F. Maruquin, Aniceta T. Cacacho, Clapton R. De San Jose, Demetrio D. Conde, Florendo D. Conde and Sergio D. Sabbun III.
VICTORY: The new set of elected public officials of Flora, Apayao (from left) SB Members Sergio D. Sabbun III, Florendo D. Conde, Demetrio D. Conde Jr., Clapton R. De San Jose, Aniceta T. Cacacho, Vic Maruquin F. Maruquin, Jessie R. Pascua, David O. Tabbaban Jr., Mayor Rodolfo B. Juan and Vice Mayor Jessica L. De San Jose of Flora, Apayao were proclaimed the day after the May 9 local elections with Eugene C. Ramos, Chairman of the COMELEC Municipal Board of Canvassers, leading the simple ceremony at the session hall of the Legislatura Building along with Vice Chair Lorna B. Ulep and Secretary Buena R. Gabriel. (photo by Normie Alawin)
Sabbun, who was third in the previous elections in 2013 barely made it to the Magic Eight by garnering a total of 2,950 votes bringing Cristelita A. Putulan into the ninth spot with 2,948 votes.
Putulan became the only incumbent and who ran under the Liberal Party who did not make it.
The rest of the LP slate have won and had been proclaimed immediately in the following morning after the generally peaceful political exercise including Mayor Juan and Vice Mayor De San Jose who have garnered 6,238 and 5,559 votes respectively.
Both Mayor Juan and Vice Mayor De San Jose ran unopposed to form the administration LP line-up.
Tabbaban, the three-time elected Barangay Chairman of Bagutong and Vice President of the Liga ng Barangay, has made it to the No. 1 spot in the local legislature with a total of 4,317 votes.
He was included in the administration slate by way of equity of incumbency in his capacity as ex-officio SB member.
Another incumbent who was in strong second with 4,038 votes was Pascua, chair of the committee on public works and infrastructure.
First time aspirant Maruquin, who ran under the Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC) and the only candidate outside the administration LP included in the INC list, came third with 4,024 votes.
Cacacho, chair on the committee on finance, appropriation and ways and means, got a total of 3,806 votes for the fourth spot .
Clapton De San Jose, chair on the committee on agriculture, trade, industry and cooperatives, settled for the fifth spot with 3,685 votes.
Siblings Demetrio and Florendo Conde finished sixth and seventh with 3,311 and 3,198 votes, respectively.
Demetrio is the current chair on peace and order, public safety, human rights and social justice while Florendo is chair on rules and privileges and ecology.
Aside from Putulan, who was chair on the committee on social services (family, women, elderly and children’s welfare), the other aspirants who did not make it were Dionicio Fernandez (NPC) at 10th (2,725), Julius Aguilar 11th (2,596), Beldion Balanan 12th (2,299) and Marcial Pablo 13th (2,030).
The voter turn-out during the essentially peaceful and orderly conduct of elections was 81.75 percent. Data showed that a total of 7,759 votes had been counted as valid. The total registered voters is 9,490.
As early as 6 a.m. on election day, voters lined-up to cast their vote in all 19 precincts scattered in 14 of the 16 barangays of Flora.
Mayor Juan waited for few minutes before he entered precinct A3 at around 1:30 p.m. when the crowd was already thinning at the Flora East Elementary School.
It was in that same precinct where Vice Mayor De San Jose, Indigenous People’s Mandatory Representative Richard De San Jose and children Aika and Kevin casted their votes earlier at around 9:30 a.m. when the line was still at its peak as they waited for almost an hour before entering.
Before that, the IPMR led a prayer at their residence for a peaceful conduct of elections as well as wishing all the candidates good luck and for more strength to Mayor Mayor Juan as the father and leader of this beloved town.
Compared to the previous poll in 2013 when the PICOS machine bogged down and delayed counting for several days before technicians from Manila were able to fix the problem, there was a swift flow of results via the VCM and the transmittal of results this time.