DAVAO CITY -- The fight for governor of Davao del Norte province continued to heat up as political mudslinging was carried out even on the final days of the campaign period for Monday’s election.
Edwin Jubahib, who is running for governor against Rodney del Rosario, made a last-ditch effort to clear his name against accusations of plunder and graft hurled against him along with his former boss, former House of Representatives Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, who is seeking another term for the province’s first district. Alvarez is also being challenged by incumbent governor Anthony del Rosario.
Jubahib, a former chief of staff of Alvarez, said there is no truth to all the accusations hurled against him such as being a fake engineer, has a pending estafa case and a drug addict.
He is also being dragged into the plunder and graft case filed by a certain Jeffrey Lopez Cabigon of Carmen, Davao del Norte.
Jubahib said he never claimed to be an engineer, although people call him that because he is engaged in the construction business.
He said barangay officials go to him to ask for help, such as on road repairs, from the office of Alvarez.
Jubahib, however, admitted he had an estafa case but this was already dismissed.
Jubahib alleged that the Del Rosarios are also maligning him by calling him a drug addict.
This prompted him to challenge the Del Rosarios to a drug test with the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).
He also dismissed accusations of corruption by Cabigon.
In his affidavit of complaint, Cabigon alleged that Jubahib amassed wealth that he was able to buy two Hummer vehicles, a Toyota Land Cruiser, and real property.
“Dili ko nagahibot ug kwarta nga dili ako-a (I don’t steal money that is not mine),” Jubahib said on Saturday.
Jubahib said he bought the Hummer as a second-hand vehicle from a friend in Cagayan de Oro. He does not own the Toyota car but only borrowed it from a friend. Jubahib also denied owning a big property.
He said he has the support of the people and barangay officials of Davao del Norte because he is well-loved by them.
Jubahib further called on the Del Rosarios to respect the people who, for many years, wanted to have change in the province.
The Del Rosarios have ruled Davao del Norte the past 40 years starting from former governor Rodolfo del Rosario. Del Rosario is actively campaigning for his son Anthony and Rodney.
He also called on the voters not to sell their votes.
“Pahangyo-a lang ko ayaw ibaligya ang inyong boto. Inyo kana -- sagrado (I urged you not to sell your votes. That is yours -- that is sacred),” he said.
Another opponent of Alvarez, second district Representative Antonio “Tonyboy” Floirendo, is challenging another Alvarez ally.
The Del Rosarios and Floirendo are running under the Hugpong ng Pagbabago founded by Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte while Jubahib and Alvarez are under the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban).
Jubahib hoped that the people would be guided by God for an honest and clean election on Monday.
Davao del Norte has been placed in the list of area of concerns by the Commission on Elections because of intense political rivalry. (PNA)