Rep. Guillermo Romarate:The David beating Goliaths in Surigao del Norte

Rep. Guillermo Romarate:

The David beating Goliaths in Surigao del Norte

This man can be likened to Biblical character diminutive David who toppled giant Goliath to the ground. Unlike what is written in the Bible, he defeated two Goliaths. But this was through local elections in the province of Surigao del Norte.

Second District Rep. Guillermo “Jun” Romarate won over former Surigao City mayor Alfonso Casurra in the May 2010 national and local elections and in the 2007 midterm elections he was victorious against former Surigao del Norte Governor Robert Lyndon Barbers.

In the 2007 elections, many are skeptical about the chances of Romarate when he was up against incumbent Surigao del Norte Gov. Barbers. Barbers has a name, Romarate has not. Some dismissed him as an alien (he was alleged to be from Ozamiz). Some are nastier. Accusing him of protector of smugglers and illegal activities.

Election time came and to the surprise of everyone, Romarate beat Barbers by a mile.

Now in 2010, many are saying Romarate’s feat is a fluke (“tsamba lang.”) They were able to say this because they are parading incumbent Surigao City Mayor Casurra. If it is in boxing, Casurra is undefeated, and undisputed king of Surigao, having won as councilor, vice mayor and mayor three times.

For the Romarate haters, this could be it. Surigaonons will definitely vote for their own.

Like in 2007, the issue of Romarate not being a pure Surigaonon is resurrected. This is very evident in the campaign poster of Casurra which banners “My Congressman, kay Surigaonon man” (My Congressman because he is a Surigaonon).

Also, the issue of Romarate’s link to the criminal underworld is again highlighted.

This is it. Romarate is finished.

Casurra was enjoying an early lead in Surigao City and the Romarate haters are rejoicing. However, just like in 2007, the votes in Tubod town, Romarate’s came in. It was a whooping 6,000 plus vote lead, just like in 2007.

It was certainly a knockout punch sending Casurra down the canvass, hard.

Then came, the votes from Bacuag town, the bailiwick of an ally, Mayor Orquina-Cebedo. It gave Romarate a 3,000 votes plus. Casurra was not able to recover.

And so, after the smoke cleared, Romarate was again declared the “undisputed, the undefeated two time champion of the world” in a Michael Buffer style.

Robert Lyndon Barbers, Alfonso Casurra. They are political heavyweights. And they tasted their first defeats from Guillerno Romarate.

The braveness of Romarate in facing the political heavyweights in Surigao del Norte is simply amazing.

His answer to the people’s unselfish support to his candidacy is to initiate a lot of projects for his congressional district – from giving thousands of Philhealth cards to construction of school buildings, road rehabilitation, among others.

Romarate top health benefactor in Caraga

Romarate recently made history as the first high-ranking government official to breach the 30,000 mark as sponsor of Philhealth cards being distributed to indigent families either in a congressional-wide or province-wide scale categories in Caraga Region. The feat earned for him the distinction as the top health benefactor from among the five provinces in the region, it was learned.

Official records from the Philhealth Caraga Regional Office revealed that Cong. Romarate were able to subscribe and distribute 34,000 Philhealth cards to indigent families in the second congressional district of Surigao del Norte which covered the towns of Alegria, Tubod, Mainit, Placer, Bacuag, Gigaquit, Claver, Taganaan, Sison, San Francisco, Malimono and the City of Surigao. He earmarked more than ten million pesos from his Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) for the largest health benefit coverage in the region’s medical history.

Rodrigo Ariar, Philhealth provincial head of Surigao Del Norte, explained that a Philhealth card given to a single family would usually benefit five members of the household. “So, if we multiply 34,000 by 5, we simply have 170,000 people as direct beneficiaries of the health care program of Cong. Jun Romarate”, Ariar concluded.

Romarate explained that his massive distribution of Philhealth cards to thousands of poor beneficiaries reflected his rare concern for the health aspect of his constituents believing that progress would only start rolling with a healthy people behind it. For him, the true wealth of a nation is its healthy people – apparently putting emphasis, in a large-scale context, to the popular saying “health is wealth”. He stressed that his distribution of the health cards was non-political or had no emphasis on the political affiliations of the recipients.


One response to this post.

  1. idol…


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