STO. TOMAS CITY -- A three-cornered fight for this city's top post come May 9, 2022 is fast shaping up.
Who are they?
According to our "Tweety" at the City Hall, the candidates may be no other than incumbent Vice Mayor Armenius Silva, former STC Administrator Atty. Arth Jhun Marasigan and Ret. Brig. Gen. Fausto Banjoe Manzanilla Jr.
Each one of them has a good fighting chance.
They all have the local machinery to lean on.
Foremost is no other than the incumbent vice mayor as he enjoys the perks of being in office, presiding and influencing the council even as he can go around the city with expenses ably covered as official functions.
At Bahay na Pula, a red-painted bar he owns in Poblacion 4, vice Silva already launched a singing contest shown online and is also promoted via the city's official Facebook page.
Accordingly, Silva has also sponsored an online tournament on Mobile Legends for all intents and purposes.
Obviously, this is to endear him to netizens out there in Sto. Tomas.
In his own words, Atty. Marasigan said during an exclusive interview by this writer, electoral campaigning for 2022 national elections could be largely fought online to the tune of 70%. The remaining 30% is by the traditional campaigning approach.
This is the reason why Atty Arth Jhun also maintains his own online public service program, AJAM on YouTube and FB.
The former STC administrator is very active on public service through his online TV program, AJAM TV.
He likes to invite Tomasinos to check out his online program, talk to him, request from him even for free legal services he says.
Actually, the former administrator who knows STC well like the back of his hand almost toppled over the outgoing mayor and former boss Edna Sanchez in the May 2019 elections.
Marasigan lost but by a little over three thousand votes, 34,714 as against the 37, 750 of Mayor Sanchez in 2019.
Needless to say, Atty. Arth already has well-oiled political machinery waiting in the wings to get going anytime.
And speaking of political machinery, the third force in the former gentleman and general might surprise everyone, including his perceived political opponents a little over 14 months from now.
This might surprise everyone but someone told me Gen. Mazanilla enjoys the backing of Mayor Edna Sanchez herself aside from all-out support coming from Citizen Crime Watch members led by San Miguel Kagawad Romulo Latayan, CCW STC chapter chairman.
Latayan is also the Spokesman of CCW for Region 4A Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, and Quezon.
Appointed city councilor of STC, Manzanilla espouses platforms on anti-criminality, anti-graft, and corruption, people empowerment, family empowerment, women's empowerment, women and child protection, Ka Romy Latayan said.
If this really is the case, and if I were VM Silva, I'd rethink my target to run for mayor.
Instead, go perhaps for re-election as is.
He still has two terms to go anyway.
And that's what I think is the safer road to take for him.