Bets for Cebu City mayor cite Jesus and the poor

·6 min read

SIX candidates are vying for the chance to rule the Queen City of the South.

Mayor Michael Rama of Partido Barug faces former councilor Margarita “Margot” Osmeña of Bando Osmeña Pundok Kauswagan who is bidding to become the first elected female mayor of Cebu City, and independent candidates Councilor David Tumulak, Crisologo Saavedra Jr., Edgar Concha Jr. and Juanito Luna.

Osmeña and Saavedra failed to submit their answers for this Face-off by the publication deadline.

Name: Michael Lopez Rama

Age: 67

Highest educational attainment: Bachelor of Law, San Beda College, passed the 1983 bar

Previous work experience:

* Vice mayor, Cebu City (2019-2021)

* National president, Philippine Association of Voluntary Arbitration (National Pava): 2018 to 2022

* President, Rotary Club of Cebu Guadalupe (2017-2018)

* Mayor, Cebu City (2010 to June 30, 2016)

* Member, Neda Board RD Com

* Chairman, Visayas Regional Development Committee (2010-2013)

* Vice mayor, Cebu City (2001-2010)

* Cebu City councilor (1992-2001)

* National vice president, Union of Local Authorities of the Philippines (2007-2010)

* National president, Vice Mayors’ League of the Philippines (2007-2010)

* National president, Philippine Councilors League of the Philippines (1998-2001)

1. What are the three most urgent problems in Cebu City? If elected, how would you address them?

DRAINAGE. First, don’t wait for the win. In fact, I am finishing the term of the late Mayor Edgardo Colina Labella, and we already have the 21 grand salute impact projects. Obviously, with all of this already in place from the time we came in last Nov. 19, Rama-Hontiveros, we already have made some breakthroughs and even completed. If you are asking me forward, still already being confronted, number one is we talk about drainage, because that is a matter that should not be ignored.

WATER SUFFICIENCY, of which we need to have a counterpart with billions and I am having a very clear meeting with MCWD (Metropolitan Cebu Water District), where are they because I am not, desalination is among others but still sustainability and what we called guarantee, fill a dam should be put in place.

POWER should really be a matter that we look into because we had that nightmare when we were hit by (Typhoon) Odette, and we were into this concern about water and there was this power and even the utilities especially on communication. So fourth would be flooding.

2. How would you describe your leadership style?

Bottoms up, participatory, inclusive, consultative and driven by philosophy, ideology and advocacies.

3. How do you see Cebu City 10 years from now?

A globally competitive smart city, highly urbanized, environmentally friendly and disaster resilient.

4. Who are your models in terms of leadership and why?

Jesus Christ because that is where he demonstrated the meaning of servanthood. Number two, Jesus Christ because if we talk about shepherding, he looked after his flock. Number three, still Jesus Christ because of stewardship.

Definitely in his lifetime and in his what we call active years in evangelizing, he was there having taken care and in fact created a lot of miracles and then still Jesus, because he oversee. I call it overseership.

Then of course partnership because he partnered with people. That is why he had his disciples, in order to bring about what ought to be as the gospel.

And last, I call it custodianship. It is still Jesus. Put all together, you do not have to get out of the bible. The real model when we talk about leadership is Jesus.

Name: David Tumulak

Age: 50

Previous work experience:

* Cebu City Councilor (2013-present); No. 1 councilor from 2013-2019

* Barangay captain, Basak Pardo (2007-2013)

* Barangay councilor, Basak Pardo (1994)

* President, Liga ng mga Barangay Kagawad

* Program anchor/police beat reporter, ABS-CBN dyAB (2000-2010)

* Consultant on socio-political affairs, Office of the Vice President of the Philippines (2004-2006)

* Research and promo supervisor, ABS-CBN Radio (1998-2006)

* Radio reporter, ABS-CBN dyAB (1995-1998)

* TV reporter, ABS-CBN Broadcasting Station (1994-1995)

* Executive producer/musical director, Radio Mindanao Network Station-dyHP Cebu (1980)

* Chairperson, Peace and Order Program (2013-2016)

* Chairperson, Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (2013-2016)

* Chairman, Committee on public order and safety (2016)

* Chairman, Health, Hospital Services and Sanitation (2016)

(Tumulak’s answers, delivered predominantly in Cebuano, have been translated into English.)

1. What are the three most

urgent problems in Cebu City. If elected, how do you plan to address them?

HEALTH. There should have been assurance for the ordinary citizen that there are health services they can receive because we are now in the post-pandemic. We should give assurance to ordinary Cebuanos that no matter what happens, God forbid if they will be hospitalized, they will not have problems with their medicine and hospitalization so their money can go directly to their families.

LIVELIHOOD ASSISTANCE. Government should assist our people in terms of livelihood because what happened, like Odette, (the Covid-19) pandemic and other disasters have greatly affected the ordinary citizen. Our people should rely not only on aid. Government should guide them so they have a source of income because it has greatly affected their finances, especially the rising prices of gasoline.

LAW AND ORDER. Part of law and order is also our discipline because we have to accept that sometimes our government is not decisive in enforcing our laws. Enforcement of laws can also not be sustained. Sometimes, they’re enforced, other times not because of politics. So what we need is to give assurance to the people, our use of automation and other electronics to help in maintaining peace in our city.

2. How would you describe your leadership style?

Dave Tumulak is not just a planner but also a doer. And coming from the grassroots level, I myself know what would be the approach. And this should have been a participatory governance. There should be involvement of our people. Not just the leader but all people, this is our city. We should love our city and every Cebuano has the moral obligation to do what he can to contribute to our city.

3. How do you see Cebu City 10 years from now?

A progressive, smart and business-friendly city. Ten years from now, our city will become even more prosperous because our programs would show that the people would be the ones to benefit from this.

4. Who are your models in terms of leadership and why?

The marginalized sector, our poor people, because regardless of difficulties they face today, they will survive. And we also consider the people of today our model because the trials the Cebuanos have undergone are grave and yet they were able to get back on their feet immediately. So the people are my inspiration, the people of Cebu City, they are bright, smart, and they know how to address their concerns and stand up.

I ask our people, in the May 9 election, this is the measure of our Cebuanos, to see what they really want: whether they want to stay in this type of situation or they want change. If they choose Dave Tumulak, they will see the complete change and development in our city that they have sought for so long.

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