Gov. Bag-ao seeks reelection in Dinagat

By : Bobby Lagsa Mindanao Today/09:11:42am 10/11/2021


Dinagat Gov. Arlene Bag-ao. (Photo grabbed from the Kaka Bag-ao FB page)

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY - Dinagat Island Gov. Arlene Bag-ao is seeking reelection after she filed her certificate of candidacy under the Liberal Party early this week.

Bag-ao, a former Cagayan de Oro-based community organizer and human rights lawyer, is a stalwart of Akbayan Party-list first becoming a sectoral representative for Akbayan in 2010.

Before entering politics, Bag-ao worked with marginalized sectors such as farmers, fisherfolk, and women not only in cases in courts, but also in seeking to change laws that often favored those in power.

Bag-ao once represented the Sumilao farmers in their struggle for land rights under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP).

In 2013, she ran for congresswoman in Dinagat Island holding the position for two terms.

In 2019, she ran for governor of the island defeating the well-entrenched Ecleo family, whose have been holding political positions.

According to Jeff Crisostomo, provincial information officer of Dinagat, Bag-ao has no vice governor running mate and congressman under her slate.

She will be facing incumbent Vice Governor Nilo Demerey Jr., who filed his COC for governor on Sunday, October 3, 2021 under Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats (Lakas-CMD) Party.

Demerey is a former mining executive. He first ran in 2016 for provincial board member under United Nationalist Alliance, then ran for vice governor in 2019 under Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban).

Former Dinagat vice governor Benglen Ecleo also filed his COC seeking his old post under Lakas-CMD.

Dinagat incumbent Rep. Alan Uno Ecleo is also seeking re-election for congress under Lakas-CMD.

Benglen Ecleo ran for governor in 2019 but was defeated by Bag-ao.

Dinagat is an enclave of the Ecleos whose father Ruben Ecleo, Sr. founded the Philippine Benevolent Missionary Association (PBMA), a Christian cult.

For the 2022 election, there are three other Ecleo family members who are seeking elective positions in the province’s provincial council second district – Reggivi Amor Ecleo-Alcaria, Joslyn Ecleo, and Gwendolyn Ecleo-Pols.

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