SAN PEDRO CITY, Laguna – These two longtime town politicians always won Magic 8 spots but now that City Hall need Top 10 candidates, Rene Hermoso and Dodie Recto lost seats in Sangguniang Panlungsod when neophytes won in the May 9 National and Local Elections here.
Much to the surprise of supporters of the two former councilors was San Pedrenses’ “blank” selection of Celso Ambayec, Jimbo Ambayec and Carlon Ambayec, who garnered vote pluralities enough for them to break down the erstwhile political magic of old-comers like Hermoso and Recto.
It was history’s first among small local government units inside or near Metro Manila that three candidates bearing one and the same surname all won council seats – only Mindanao used to have it.
Others see the election feats of the three Ambayecs as “fair”.
Ambayec was one of the original families who lived in San Pedro Tunasan which was historically not densely populated, so the three successful candidates and other residents under this old family name are considered by many as blood relatives.
Unlike Hermoso and Recto, their former colleague Bobot Berroya regained his old post. This nephew of former Councilor Rosie Berroya is poised to work for three more terms.
Supporters of Hermoso and Recto vowed more campaign sorties and much serious comebacks in 2019 if the two decide to run for councilors again, while Councilor-elect Jimbo Ambayec has this to say about them:
“May pinalad, may hindi pinalad. Personal ko pong naranasan ang pagkapanalo at pagkatalo sa iba’t ibang yugto ng halalan, sapagkat ang buhay ay hindi pwedeng laging panalo, hindi rin naman pwedeng laging talo…naranasan ko po ang sakit at hirap ng pagkabigo subalit malaki ang aking paniniwala na ang lahat ng sugat ay nakahandang maghilom. Mahirap magdiwang sa kabila ng may mga kasama kang hindi nagtagumpay. Subalit isa rin itong karangalan dahil nagkaroon muli ako ng pagkakataong makapaglingkod bilang isang halal na opisyal.”
The Commission on Elections allowed San Pedro, by virtue of its cityhood in 2015, to add two more seats in the council – from the previous number of eight councilors to ten councilors – for the first time this year. DCA