Umalis close to winning Ecija gov, vice gov race

CABANATUAN CITY -- Former Gov. Aurelio “Oyie” M. Umali is moving closer to re-claiming his former seat at the capitol for the fourth time since 2007 after partial and unofficial election results showed him leading by a wide margin over his rivals in the gubernatorial race in Nueva Ecija, it was learned yesterday.

Aurelio, who was governor for three consecutive terms from 2007-2016, was way ahead of closest opponent former General Tinio Mayor Virgilio Bote, local stalwart of the administration’s PDP-Laban party. Aurelio got 476,920 votes against Bote’s 337,768 or a big margin of 139,152 votes.

At far third was former governor and National Food Authority chief Eduardo Nonato “Edno” Joson at 94,560 votes.

The results were based on the 99.94 percent of the total number of precincts already transmitted to the poll body’s server as of 7:26 a.m. yesterday.

Aurelio’s running mate and younger brother, Cabanatuan City Vice Mayor Emmanuel Antonio “Doc Anthony” M. Umali was also winning by a commanding lead of 105,215 votes over provincial Board Member Edward Thomas F. Joson, eldest son of ex-Governor Tomas Joson III, in the vice gubernatorial contest. Doc Anthony had 510.051 votes with Joson garnering 404,836.

Meanwhile, Aurelio’s wife, Gov. Czarina “Cherry” D. Umali was losing against re-electionist Rep. Rosanna “Ria” Vergara, in the province’s third district congressional race.

Czarina trailed Rosanna, wife of Cabanatuan city mayor Julius Cesar “Jay” Vergara, with Czarina obtaining 120,674 votes as against Rosanna’s 160,298 votes, a margin of 39,624 votes.

Two other re-electionist congresswomen -- Estrellita “Ging”Suansing and Micaela “Mikki” S. Violago, are also close to posting landslide victories over their respective foes in the first and second districts of the province.

Suansing was lording over her first district congressional opponent, senior board member Rommel Padilla, actor-father of teen superstar Daniel Padilla. Suansing’s votes tallied 149,431 votes as against Rommel’s 98,098 or a difference of 51,333 votes.

Mikki led her brother-in-law and independent bet Lito Violago by 91,120 votes. Mikki got 140,915 with Lito having only 49,795 votes.

In the province’s fourth district, it was however, a different story. Re-electionist Rep. Magnolia “Megan” Antonino, daughter of former three-termer Rep. Rodolfo “Rody” W. Antonino, of the National Unity Party, was trailing behind former Gapan city mayor Dr. Maricel Natividad-Nagaòo.

Nagaòo, wife of re-elected San Leonardo town mayor Froilan Nagaòo Jr. of the People   j #js Reform Party, led Antonino by 12,163 votes with the former getting 137,829 votes in contrast to Antonino   j #js 125,666.