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End of an era? Estrada-Ejercito clan suffers crushing defeat in 2019 polls

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Tuesday, May 14th, 2019

Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada, meeting the press after casting his vote at P. Burgos Elementary School in Sta. Mesa, Manila in 2019 Midterm Elections. (Daniel M. Iglesias/PVI)

MANILA, Philippines – Is it time for the Ejercito-Estrada clan to take a break from politics?

The clan’s patriarch, former president and reelectionist Manila mayor Joseph “Erap” Estrada is losing by a wide margin to mayoral contender Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso.

Based on the Commission on Elections (Comelec) partial, unofficial results as of 3:50 p.m. on Tuesday with 99.06 percent of election returns, Domagoso has garnered 354,327 votes while Estrada got 208,561.

Moreno previously served as vice mayor to Erap from 2013 to 2016. He joined but lost the senatorial race in 2016.

With Erap’s loss came the failed mayoral bid of his granddaughter Janella Ejercito Estrada in San Juan City.

Janella, daughter of senatorial aspirant Jinggoy Estrada, who got 24,813 votes was beaten by former vice mayor Francis Zamora who garnered 35,060 votes.

Zamora’s victory ended the Ejercito-Estrada clan’s nearly 50-year reign in the city. The Estrada clan took hold of San Juan City since 1969 when then popular actor Estrada won as mayor. He was succeeded by his sons Jinggoy and JV Ejercito then JV’s mother Guia Gomez to whom Zamora narrowly lost his bid for mayor in 2016.

The Zamoras and Estradas were family friends for 30 years until Francis and Guia both ran in the mayoralty race in 2016. Francis claimed he was cheated in the election.

READ: Sotto, Zamora, Moreno topple giants; make history in PH politics

Meanwhile, Erap’s nephew ER Ejercito failed in his bid for governor in Laguna against reelectionist governor Ramil Hernandez.

His other nephew, Gary Estrada Ejercito also lost in Cainta, Rizal’s vice mayoralty race against Ace Servillion.

In the senate race, Erap’s sons Joseph Victor “JV” Ejercito and Jinggoy Estrada are trailing beyond the top 12. JV is currently at 13th spot with 13,866,130 votes while his brother Jinggoy is at 15th with 11,018,985 votes as of 3:50 pm with 99.06 percent of election returns.

End of an era?

Did the May 13 midterm elections signal the end of a political era for the Estrada-Ejercito clan?

According to political analyst, Professor Edmund Tayao, Erap’s defeat could mean that the Manila voters are looking for a new leader who could bring significant changes to the city.

“Erap was considered as some kind of alternative having been a previous president, so many may have thought he would be a better Mayor compared to [Alfredo] Lim but after two terms there was not much change that happened,” Tayao told UNTV News and Rescue in an interview.

Tayao also believes that the previous rift between JV and Jinggoy have damaged their chances of winning in Senate race.

“Ang naka-contribute pa dito yung masyadong negative campaign, below the belt yung ginawa niya against his own brother, that boomeranged on him,” he said in reference to the half-brothers’ disagreements in the past.

“So, instead of maintaining his supposed advantage over his half-brother, nabaligtad ang pangyayari, mas binoto ng tao si JV Ejercito,” he added.

The two brothers had admitted to a tepid relationship after JV decided to use the Estrada name to boost his political image. Their relationship also turned sour at the height of the 2013 pork barrel scam.

Tayao said that based on his personal assessment of the general election results, Filipino voters seemed to be looking for new names and faces in politics who could deliver positive results.

“What is shown to the general results of the elections which is across the board, nage-experiment ang mga tao, ayaw na nila ng more of the same so they elected a different sort of combination,” he said. (with details from Nel Maribojoc)

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Manila LGU presents arrested suspects to the media

by Aileen Cerrudo   |   Posted on Monday, July 15th, 2019

Manila Mayor Isko Moreno presenting the three most wanted suspects in the city

The Manila local government unit (LGU) on Monday (July 15) presented to the media arrested suspects, including the three most wanted in the city.

Manila Mayor Isko Moreno gathered the media at the city hall after leading the flag raising ceremony. He then presented three most wanted suspects in Manila including a woman accused of extortion.

Accused Melanie Angeles allegedly belong to an organizer called ‘Bakulaw Group’ and was accused for extorting P500-P1,000 from sidewalk vendors for a vending space.

The three arrested suspects are Irwin Pelina who is wanted for robbery with unnecessary violence, Bob Navarro, and Jason Fullantes who are wanted for rape.

Moreno calls on the faction of organizers who extort money from vendors to leave the city.

“Vendor lang ang hindi yumayaman sa kalye. Organizer ang yumayaman. Sinabi ko na sa inyo, magsipagbalik na kayo sa kani-kaniyang bayan. Hindi na kayo welcome dito, (The vendors are the only ones not earning in the streets, the organizers are. I am telling all of you to go back to your towns. You are not welcome here)” he said.—AAC (with reports from April Cenedoza)

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US Ambassador lauds ‘total rockstar’ Manila Mayor Isko

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Friday, July 12th, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – “A total Rockstar,” this was how United States Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim called new Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso when they met on Friday.

Kim lauded Domagoso’s progressive policies and leadership style that “bring dynamism and energies” to the position.

The new mayor of the Philippine capital city recently grabbed headlines for dramatically reforming Manila’s congested roads and markets, ordering clearing operations against illegal vendors and other road obstructions.

READ: Manila Mayor Isko orders ‘shrine makeover’ near city hall

READ: Mayor Isko warns to close Manila malls with illegal vendors

Kim also commended Domagoso’s stance on the government’s campaign against drugs. The mayor earlier expressed support for the program but cautioned police to respect human rights.

“We appreciate your approach. You’re dealing with it in a manner that is consistent with human rights and rule of law,” Kim said.

Mayor Isko, who took part in the US State Department sponsored International Visitors Leadership Program in 2011, also shared with Kim his policies and plans for the City and “the core values that influence his mindset and leadership style.”

When asked by Kim on what keeps Mayor Isko awake at night, he replied: “My greatest is for the people to accept that chaos is the norm in the city.”

44-year old Domagoso was with his chief of staff, Cesar Chavez, when they paid Kim a visit on Friday morning while the US envoy was accompanied by Internal Political Chief of the Embassy Josh Morris. Their meeting lasted for nearly 45 minutes.

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Manila Mayor Isko orders ‘shrine makeover’ near city hall

by Marje Pelayo   |   Posted on Wednesday, July 10th, 2019

Manila Mayor Isko Domagoso

MANILA, Philippines – Mayor Isko Domagoso continued his city-wide clearing and cleaning operations on Wednesday (July 10).

But instead of going somewhere else, the Mayor opted to check the areas surrounding the city mayor’s office which, according to him, has literally turned into makeshift toilets.

The Mayor was referring to the shrines of notable Filipinos which apparently were surrounded with mounds of human and animal wastes, the reason for the putrid smell within the area.

The Andres Bonifacio Shrine has also been vandalized which further annoyed the Mayor, describing it as “disrespecting” the country’s heritage.

“That is the Office of the Mayor — the seat of power of the City of Manila,” he said.

“Tapos ito amoy tae rito. Nagkalat. Ito sariwa pa (It stinks. Fecal wastes are everywhere. This one is still fresh),” he added.

Mayor Isko immediately ordered the flushing and sanitizing of the monument.

He also ordered the cleaning and makeover of the Emilio Jacinto monument.

After the inspection, the Mayor ordered the relief of Lawton’s Public Community Precinct Commander for negligence of duty.

He also asked the vendors around to keep the vicinity clean. – with reports from Harlene Delgado

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