New Vice Mayer Edgardo Labella, Cong. Gwen Garcia Proclaimed Winners

CEBU (6th Update) -- The canvassing of votes for Cebu City’s candidates finally came to a close Thursday evening with the proclamation of Edgar Labella as the duly elected vice mayor of the city.
Labella, runningmate of reelected Mayor Mike Rama, defeated incumbent Vice Mayor Joy Augustus Young of the Bando Osmena Pundok Kauswagan (BOPK) by only 184 votes, official results released by the City Board of Canvassers (CBOC) showed.
He garnered a total of 203,267 votes, while Young got 203,083 votes.
Results transmitted to the CBOC showed that Labella actually lost to Young in the last three precincts from Barangay Cambinocot, Mambaling and Barrio Luz. The votes from these areas, however, failed to affect Labella’s standing.
Supporters of Team Rama, who trooped to the Cebu City social hall where the canvassing has been done, welcomed Labella’s victory with cheers. Team Rama’s jingle was also played during the proclamation of Labella.
Mayor Rama, who arrived at the canvassing area Thursday afternoon, greeted his runningmate with a hug.
"We're happy Team Rama won and we have a goal to serve the people," Rama said.
Labella’s proclamation came after election returns from the three barangays were transmitted to the CBOC around 9 p.m. Thursday.
The CBOC and members of the board of election inspectors had a hard time sending electronically the results that Cebu Provincial Comelec Officer Ferdinand Gujilde decided to manually transmit them instead.
Regulations said that in the event of failure in electronic transmission, the election results can be uploaded to the Consolidation and Canvassing System (CCS) manually by inserting the compact flash (CF) card to the card reader attached to the system.
Alona Serenobis, a teacher from Cambinocot, had her 15-minute fame when she was instructed by the CBOC to remove the CF card from the Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machine and endorse it to the CCS technician.
After the transmission, the CBOC then asked Team Rama to comment in 30 minutes the motion of the BOPK-Liberal Party lawyers “that the unread or rejected ballots in all of the clustered precincts in Cebu City (including the above-indicated precincts/clustered precincts), especially where the rejection was caused by the breakdown of the PCOS machine, be counted and included in the counting and canvass of election returns.”
The Team Rama-United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) opposed the motion, saying “the presented issue are not proper to be raised in canvassing/consolidating” and “what happened in the BEI proceedings such as the alleged rejected ballots cannot be raised before the Honorable Board of Canvassers as the board can only canvass the transmitted results from PCOS machine.”
The CBOC then denied the BOPK motion for lack of jurisdiction.
Gujilde said pre-proclamation controversy should be filed in the regular court.
Labella, a former councilor of Cebu City and a survivor of the 1998 Prince of the Orient sea mishap, was finally proclaimed at 10 p.m. Thursday. He was the author of the country’s only running ordinance, which took effect last year.
CEBU CITY (4th Update, 7:30 p.m.) -- The Provincial Board of Canvassers (PBOC) proclaimed Thursday Governor Gwen Garcia as the elected representative of the third district of Cebu province.
Garcia of the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) defeated Liberal Party’s candidate Geraldine Yapha by 1,984 votes.
As of 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Garcia garnered a total of 94,305 votes against the 89,952 votes of Yapha, official results posted on the Commission on Elections (Comelec) showed.
Also proclaimed as Cebu’s congressman for the sixth district on Thursday was Representative Luigi Quisumbing.
On his Twitter account, Quisumbing thanked voters in the sixth district of the province for their support. "Gikan sa kailadman ng akong kasing-kasing, daghang salamat Sixto Distrito," he said.
Other winners proclaimed were Provincial Board Members-elect Grecilda "Gigi" Sanchez and Alex Binghay for the third district of Cebu, and Arleigh Sitoy and Teddy Ouano for the sixth district.
Their proclamation came after all election returns from the third and sixth district of Cebu province were transmitted to the PBOC Thursday.


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