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What’s next for the Duranos?

Will former Tourism boss Ace Durano remain a private citizen? Or will he accept offers to either run for a Senate seat or seek the governorship?

By Bong Galarpe (Contributor)

Cebu’s so-called Durano country is now locked in a legal battle for supremacy between brothers — a battle political observers expect would be won by the youngest son of the late Congressman Ramon Durano Sr.

The motion for reconsideration to the Commission on Elections’ rejection of the recall petition filed by Danao City Mayor Ramon “Boy” Durano Jr. against his brother Vice Mayor Ramon “Nito” Durano III and nine councilors is being heard in Manila as of this writing.

Whether the Comelec will deny the motion or reconsider the mayor’s recall petition against his younger brother, a special election for city mayor still looms ahead in Danao.

To recall, the contending political siblings have filed recall petitions against each other earlier this year. But while the vice mayor’s petition was certified sufficient, the mayor’s own petition was rejected by the Comelec en banc.

City Councilor Jorge John Cane, one of the subjects in the recall petition filed by the mayor, is confident the motion for reconsideration won’t see the light of day and that a recall election would be held early next year.

“Once the resolution is released, the election officer will proceed to verify the signatures of the voters who signed the recall petition (against Mayor Boy) and the Comelec will set the schedule of election within 30 days therefrom,” Cane said in a report by Sun.Star Cebu. “So, hopefully, we’ll have recall election in January next year, barring dilatory tactics by their lawyer.”

So, whatever the outcome of the Comelec’s hearing, a showdown between Boy and Nito is in the offing for Danao city mayor.

This is not the first inter-family conflict among the Duranos. In 1988, the late Thaddeus “Deo” Durano ran against Mayor Boy and another brother, Jesus (Don). Don, who ran for vice mayor that time and won together with Boy, is currently the city administrator and supported the mayor’s recall petition against Nito.

Lawyer Gloria Lastimosa Dalawampu, the mayor’s counsel, said Boy is confident to win the recall election because of Don’s backing. Don, who also served as mayor from 1988 to 2001, is still considered a strong political leader in Danao.

However, the people of Danao (and the entire fifth district) looks up to Vice Mayor Nito, although the youngest in the family, as the legitimate successor of the Durano patriarch, Ramon “Mano Amon” Durano Sr., and believes to have complete control of the city’s politics.

Nito, who inherited Mano Amon’s economic and political clout not only in Danao but the whole fifth district, has earned the respect of the Cebuano populace — although apparently not of his brothers’ who seem to feel left out by his rise to power.

Together with his sons Ramon “Red” Durano VI and former Tourism secretary and congressman Joseph “Ace” Durano, Nito holds the interest of both national and local politicians.

The votes from the 5th district in Cebu province — under the leadership of Nito and his sons —  are considered swing votes. In other words, a provincial candidate  supported by Nito’s family would surely emerge victorious. Cebu fifth district votes always were a huge plus for a national candidate.

Considering the recall election as in the bag, what’s next for Nito, Red, and Ace?

Well, Nito and Red are predictable as they would surely run again for a congressional seat and the mayoralty, respectively, in 2013, but Ace is still a big question mark.

The best prospect for the former DOT secretary, according to some local political analysts, is to either run for senator or governor. Or Ace may choose to stay – but still work actively — behind the political scene. Which do you prefer?

About anol_cebu

As chief digital officer of PRworks Inc., Emmanuel Mongaya manages the digital communications of the public relations agency. He also blogs, writes columns for Sun.Star Cebu and Superbalita, and serves as administrator for “Maghisgot Kitag Politika Bay,” Cebu’s dynamic political community in Facebook.

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  1. Pingback: Durano supports Magpale’s lead in province « Politika 2013 - December 28, 2011

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