Ferrer, 3 congressional bets, 21 others running unopposed in Negros Occidental

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BACOLOD CITY — Former Fourth District Rep. Jeffrey Ferrer leads the list of candidates in various positions in the province, who are just awaiting proclamation after running unopposed.

Initially, Ferrer, the running mate of gubernatorial bet, incumbent Vice Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson, was challenged by Raul Baterna of Sagay City, but the latter withdrew his certificate of candidacy on November 12.

Also, three out of seven candidates for congressional seats in Negros Occidental, including Bacolod City, are running unopposed.

Neophyte Jose Francisco Benitez, president of Philippine Women’s University, is succeeding his elder brother, Alfredo Benitez, in the third district.

The third district covers the cities of Talisay, Silay, Victorias, and the municipalities of Murcia and E.B. Magalona.

Another sure winner is Ma. Lourdes “Marilou” Arroyo-Lesaca, sister-in-law of House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, who will replace Rep. Alejandro Mirasol in the fifth district.

Arroyo-Lesaca previously served as Kasangga party-list representative from 2007 to 2010.

In the second district, incumbent Rep. Leo Rafael Cueva is also assured of a third and final term, representing the cities of Sagay and Cadiz and Manapla town.

For the post of board member, Rommel Debulgado and Araceli Somosa are also running unopposed in the first district; Manuel Frederick Ko and Andrew Montelibano, third district; and Jose Benito Alonso and Victor Javellana, fourth district.

Also among the sure winners are six mayors, including Melecio Yap Jr. of Escalante City; Alfredo Marañon III, Sagay City; Nicholas Yulo, Bago City; Maria Gina Lizares, Sipalay City; Miguel Antonio Peña, Pulupandan; and John Paul Alvarez, Ilog.

Unopposed vice mayoral candidates include Ramon Torres of Bago City; Johnny Gabriel, Escalante City; Rex Jalandoon, La Carlota City; Narciso Javelosa Jr., Sagay City; Oscar Montilla Jr., Sipalay City; Genaro Rafael Alvarez, Ilog; Johnny Reosura, Murcia; Jimmy Gavan, Pontevedra; and Anthony Gerard Suatengco, Pulupandan. (PNA)