ALVAREZ, JUBAHIB NECK-TO-NECK IN DAVAO DEL NORTE PRE-POLL SURVEY
In Davao del Norte, reelectionist First District Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez and his candidate for Governor are in a stiff fight in the race to the bottom of pre-poll surveys for the coming May election.
Alvarez, his political stock downed by his ouster in July as Speaker of the House of Representatives and battered by allegations of corruption, was a few points away from Zero in the survey conducted by Pulso Dabaw. Gubernatorial bet Edwin Jubahib, a virtual unknown and candidate of Alvarez’s “Alvarez Wing” competed with Alvarez in the neck-to-neck race to the bottom of the survey, the first by the Davao Region-based pollster in relation to the 2019 mid-term election. The survey was conducted during the period January 8-14, 2019 involving 1,200 repondents. Three Pulso Dabaw five-member teams separately generated results of the survey in face-to-face encounters with respondents of voting age in the province (500 respondents), First Congressional District (350 repondents) and Second Congressional District (350 respondents). The respondents were asked the question: IF THE 2019 MID-TERM ELECTION IS HELD TODAY WHO WILL YOU VOTE FOR AS…(GOVERNOR/CONGRESSMAN)? In the race for Governor, Rodney del Rosario was picked by 284 repondents or 81 percent against Jubahib’s 59 or 17%. 2% or seven of the respondents were undecided. In the First District race, Anthony del Rosario clobbered Alvarez with a high 255 respondents (73%) against the former Speaker who got the nod of a measly 77 or 22%. The undecided numbered 18 repondents (5%). Rep. Antonio Floirendo Jr. in the Second District survey, was picked by 322 respondents (92%) with Dujali netting an extremely low 21 (6%), with 7 (2%) in the Undecided bracket. Rodney del Rosario, a sitting member of the Provincial Board, and younger brother, incumbent Governor Anthony del Rosario are cousins of Floirendo.
The Del Rosarios and Floirendo are running under the banner of the Hugpong Ng Pagbabago (HNP), a regional party organized by presidential daughter Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio. Alvarez, Jubahib and Dujali carry the banner of the Alvarez Wing, a local bloc aligned with the PDP/Laban, of which Alvarez is the secretary general. Jovita Salvador, Pulso Dabaw chief executive officer, said the survey is uncommissioned. Salvador said it would release soon results of survey conducted during the period January 15-28, which shall include a poll on voters’ preference in the cities of Igacos (Island Garden City of Samal), Tagum and Panabo. She explained that its first surveys zeroed in on Davao del Norte as it is the only province in the Davao Region where the coming election is “most politically pronounced.” Salvador said that while there is also a “hot contest’ in the race for Governor in Davao del Sur, candidates for top positions in other provinces (Davao de Oro, Davao Oriental and Davao Occidental) are either reelectionist incumbents backed by Mayor Duterte-Carpio’s HNP or are facing only token opposition.
Social Weather Stations (SWS) has strongly condemned a fake pre-election survey showing candidates of the Partido Demokratiko Pilpiino/Lakas ng Bansa (PDP/Laban) winning in the mid-term elections in May in Davao del Norte. The company has issued a Public Advisory on June 22, 2019, declaring the survey as unauthorized by SWS. Mahar Mangahas, president and chief executive officer of SWS, said the survey is “fake and malicious” and advised the public to disregard the fakery. Mangahas said SWS will file charges against groups or persons behind the survey. Printed copies of the survey, which carried the logo and company name of SWS, were widely distributed in the province. The fake survey had First District Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez winning by an unbelievably wide margin against Governor Anthony del Rosario, who is contesting the reelection of the former Speaker of the House of Representatives who was ousted in July this year amid charges of alleged corruption. Gov. del Rosario and his team carry the banner of the Hugpong Ng Pagbabago (HNP), a regional political party organized by presidential daughter Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio.
The team of Alvarez is running under the Alvarez Wing, a local bloc formed by Alvarez as an independent group outside of PDP/Laban. Reports have it that a group in PDP/Laban is moving for the ouster of Alvarez as secretary general of the party of President Rodrigo Duterte. The fake survey also had Board Member Rodney del Rosario (HNP) losing against virtual unknown Edwin Jubahib (Alvarez Wing) in the race for Governor; and Second District Rep. Antonio Floirendo Jr. (HNP) losing against Vice Governor Alan Dujali (Alvarez Wing). In the fake survey, the contest for other elective positions (vice governor, city mayor, vice mayor and city and municipal councilors) also showed Alvarez Wing bets winning by wide margins against HNP candidates. Sources said operators identified as belonging to the Alvarez Wing are said to be behind the distribution of the fake survey. The fake survey of the Alvarez Wing surfaced as Alvarez’s reelection bid faces doom with practically all political forces ranged against the ex-Speaker, with local independent surveys showing his looming debacle. Not only is Alvarez and his team up against the formidable Floirendo-Del Rosario group, which has ruled DavNor for decades. Alvarez is also ranged against Mayor Duterte-Carpio who has vowed to campaign against his reelection, after Alvarez called her HNP as an opposition party.
Former House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez is Number One in the list of biggest spenders in the House of Representatives for 2017, according to the Commission on Audit (COA).
Based on the COA’s itemized list of amounts paid to and expenses incurred by lawmakers, Davao del Norte First District Rep. Alvarez, spent ₱43.7 million on his second year as Speaker, ₱30.4 million of which went to office consultants.
The amount does not include the discretionary fund of the Office of the House Speaker which could run into billions of pesos.
The House last year dropped from its payroll contractual employees connected with the office of Alvarez, who is seeking reelection in the May mid-term election.
In a memorandum on July 30, 2018 , Director II Evelyn de Jesus of the Human Resource Management Service of the House ordered the House Accounting Services to delete a list of 42 contractual employees assigned at the office of the Speaker effective August 2018.
The memorandum came just days after Alvarez was replaced on July 24, 2018 as House Speaker by Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
Sources at the House of Representatives revealed that the list did not include at least 121 consultants receiving monthly compensation from P20,000 to P50,000.
The list of contractual employees and consultants were included on the payroll beginning on July 16, 2016.
Last year, the list of consultants and contractual employees was made public. In the list were radio broadcasters based in Davao del Norte.
The list of contractual workers included Rommel Pastoral, a broadcaster who engages in the racket of selling in his radio program purportedly winning numbers in the Philippine lottery, with a salary of P50,000 a month.
Also in the list is Ruel Dagsangan, who receives a monthly stipend of P50,000. Radioman Dagsangan works as a regular employee of the Tagum City-based DXDN Radyo Ukay of the University of Mindanao.
The radio broadcasters in the payroll of the office of Alvarez, based on their broadcast, are identified in Davao del Norte as belonging to the “media bureau’ of the former Speaker.
With a total estimated monthly compensation of P1,082,000, the contractual employees were paid an estimated total of P12,984,012 after two two years.
Three lawmakers from Mindanao, two from Davao Region and one from North Cotabato, are in the list of the biggest spenders.
Pwersa ng Bayaning Atleta (PBA) Party-list Representative Jericho Nograles followed Alvarez in the list with a total of ₱23.4 million expenses that year.
A third Mindanaoan solon is in the top five — North Cotabato Representative Nancy Catamco with her 2017 expenditures reaching ₱20.62 million.
Kalinga congressman Allen Jesse Mangaoang is on third with ₱22 million, followed by former DIWA Party-list Representative and now Department of Justice Undersecretary Emmeline Aglipay-Villar with ₱20.5 million.