BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
The tandem of Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson and Vice Gov. Jeffrey Ferrer is now being challenged by a woman claiming to be a visionary and a self-employed man.
Maria Socorro Sibulan, a self-proclaimed visionary, yesterday filed her certificate of candidacy for the position as governor of Negros Occidental.
Sibulan, a widower, claimed that Virgin Mary appeared to her and told her to run for governor because the world is already polluted.
Sibulan a mother of two daughters, yesterday disclosed that it has been her plan to join politics upon her return to La Carlota City.
Married to a Japanese she met in Manila, Sibulan, 50, said she stayed in Japan with her partner, Heriko Okada, for more than 20 years. She added that her two daughters are now working in Japan.
Sibulan (Independent) will challenge Lacson for the gubernatorial post.
Ferrer, on the other hand, is being challenged by a certain Jonry Gargarita, a businessman-resident of Binalbagan, Negros Occidental, for the vice gubernatorial post.
Gargarita filed his certificate of candidacy on October 5 at the Provincial Social Hall in Bacolod City, where the Comelec temporarily holds its office.
This also developed as more candidates yesterday filed their respective certificates of candidacy at the Comelec provincial office, including Sagay City Mayor Alfredo “Thirdie” Marañon, who is running for the Negros Occidental 2nd district congressional post.
Board Member Valentino Miguel Alonso also filed on October 6 his COC, as a representative of the 5th district in the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Negros Occidental.
Rolito Espinosa, who is affiliated with Lakas-CMD, also filed his COC on Oct. 5 for the position as board member of the 5th district of Negros Occidental.
Other mayoralty aspirants, who also filed yesterday their respective CoCs, were Sagay City Vice Mayor Narwin Javelosa, who will run as mayor of Sagay City, reelectionist Mayor Manolet Escalante in Manapla and Emmanuel Aranda in Hinigaran.
Maranon, who is the chairman of the United Negros Alliance, was accompanied by incumbent Rep. Rafael Leo Cueva, who is running for vice mayor of Sagay City, and Escalante, along with other Sagay City officials.*