POLITICAL MYSTIQUE NO. 1, WHO IS “JOEBEN”
Two-termer Mayor of Ibajay, Three Termer Governor of Aklan, Three-termer Congressman of the Lone District of Aklan at the House of Representatives. Now, governor-elect of the province.
Still undefeated throughout his political career which started in 1988 when he was first elected as Ibajay Mayor. He is incumbent Congressman, now Governor-elect of Aklan, Florencio “Joeben” Tumbokon Miraflores, endearly known to his townmates as “Kalamay” (sugar).
What a mystique is Joeben in the field of Aklan politics. The man I once described in my written articles as “Mr. Cool” is again elected as the next governor of Aklan. He was, is and will never be a “pikon” in the midst of harshest criticisms from his political detractors, a trait which greatly endeared him to the voting populace of our province.
Definitely, he was, is and will always be regarded as a dynamic performer in public service during all his stint as an elected public official as mayor, governor and congressman, thereafter, as governor again.
When will he taste defeat in the political arena in Aklan? No one will ever know, as Joeben continues to win. A born winner, never to lose in Aklan political arena.
POLITICAL MYSTIQUE NO 2. WHO IS “ANTONG”.
He has no college degree to boast of.
I was personally amused when he announced his plan to launch his mayoralty bid. Where? In his hometown, Banga, The Beautiful, a home for choosy and classy people where a college degree is an indispensable stature particularly in the field of politics.
I am referring to Banga Mayor Antonio Maming, very popularly known as “Antong”. Antong loves to call me always Nong Odon as his elder sister was a college classmate in Aklan College, Josephine “Jo” Maming, now working at the United States Defense Department, or the PENTAGON.
Ranged against a doctor of medicine and a lawyer, Antong handily won the mayoralty race in Banga in 2007. In 2010, ranged against a doctor of medicine with the full backing of the Provincial Governor, Antong handily won his reelection bid.
Despite that, I was more amused when Antong announced his congressional bid bannering the political opposition in the province.
Ranged against the vaunted, well-oiled machinery of the local Tibyog Party which dominated Aklan politics for decades, Antong was undaunted.
Opposing Ted Haresco’s debut in Aklan politics, Antong never waivered.
Despite his intellectual stature, Antong persevered and got the nod of the majority of the voting population in the capital town of Kalibo and the neighboring towns of Banga, New Washington and Numancia municipalities generally considered as the hometowns of intellectual voters. Antong also won in Libacao and Makato.
Ted Haresco, admittedly, is an economist, schooled and trained in foreign universities and the international business community. Most importantly, Ted is regarded as “moneyed”, an indispensable ingredient in politics.
Antong narrowly lost. But he will never lose his pride as far as Aklan politics is concerned.
Leading, the ragtag opposition in the province with hardly a political machinery to speak of, Antong had a very decent showing giving Ted the greatest scare in his political life. Without Ted’s hometown of Ibajay delivering the clinching margin, Antong could be the representative of Aklan in Congress starting July this year, a thing I cannot size up how. Banga is now Antong’s stronghold. While he lost the congressional race, his amiable and lovely wife, Erlinda, won as the next mayor of the town which hosts the sprawling campus of the Aklan State University. (by Odon S. Bandiola) /MP