‘Manay’ vs ‘Manang’ in the fourth district

December 11, 2009 at 5:48 pm Leave a comment


By Yolanda Z. Sotelo

DAGUPAN CITY – It is “Manay vs Manang” in the congressional race of the fourth district of Pangasinan with Gina de Venecia and Celia Lim running for the seat that be vacated by former Speaker Jose de Venecia.

De Venecia is known as “Manay Gina” in the district while Lim is known as “Manang Celia” in the business circle, especially among employees of Magic group of companies which the Lim family own.

Manay (Bicolano) and Manang (Ilocano) are affectionate terms for elder sisters.

Gina is the wife de Venecia while Celia is the wife of Benjamin Lim who served as fourth district representative of the district and mayor of Dagupan City.

The former speaker and Benjamin Lim have slugged it out in the 2007 congressional elections, with de Venecia emerging as the victor.

Celia Lim filed her certificate of candidacy for congress Tuesday night.

Hours before she filed her CoC, retired Police Director Arturo Lomibao issued a statement that he was withdrawing from the congressional race, citing family and work as his reasons.

His withdrawal would have meant Gina to run virtually unopposed (perennial losing candidate Alejandro Decano filed his CoC) for the position that her husband is vacating.

“That’s part of democracy and I wish her (Lim) well,” de Venecia told the Inquirer in a text message.

De Venecia’s supporters said she was ahead of the race because she had made known her plan to run months back, while Lim’s candidacy came as a surprise to most district residents.

The De Venecias have been conducting almost weekly medical missions in the towns and city covered by the district, namely Mangaldan, San Fabian, Manaoag, San Jacinto and Dagupan.

Lim said she was running because of clamor among district residents to have a “genuine Pangasinense” who can speak both Pangasinan and Ilocano languages.

But de Venecia said she chose to be a Pangasinense when “I married my husband and embraced all his constituents since 1987 and served and nurtured them.”

“I guess that makes me more of a Pangasinense than anyone,” she said in a text message.

Benjamin Lim is likewise running as mayor Dagupan, filing his CoC at 11:15 pm of Tuesday.

He told reporters, who waited patiently for his filing, that he and his wife decided to run because he received “endorsements and calls from various sectors in the city telling me they needed me back in Dagupan.”

“We have earlier decided to retire from politics, but the calls from different sectors are so strong that we can’t deny Dagupan the luxury to choose their leaders and I hope Dagupenos are happy to be given a choice,” he said.

Lim added that he and his wife, considered successful in business and who are nearing seniority age, have decided to spend the rest of their lives to be public servants.

His son Bryan run against incumbent Mayor Alipio Fernandez Jr. in 2007, but Bryan will just be “our campaign manager.”

Fernandez said it was Lim’s “karapatan (right)” to run for any elective position.

“I just have to work hard,” he told the Inquirer when asked on his plan now that he was has opponent.

Entry filed under: News.

Gina: GMA’s running for congress her prerogative Pangasinan candidates ‘all in the family’

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