Aga Muhlach loses to ruling Bicol dynasty

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LEGAZPI CITY: Movie actor Aga Muhlach (LP) suffered a setback against the longest-ruling political dynasty in the Bicol region represented by Wimpy Fuentebella (NPC).

Representative-elect Wimpy Fuente­bella steps into the shoed of his father, outgoing lawmaker Arnulfo Fuentebella.

Wimpy embodies the fourth generation of the longest reigning political clan in the country.

Wimpy garnered 82,834 votes against Aga Muhlach’s 80,629, or a 2,205-vote lead.
Fuentebella patriarch Don Mariano was a former gobernadorcillo of Sañgay town and was governor of Ambos Camarines during the American occupation.

His sons—Manuel, Jose and Felix—followed his political footsteps. Jose helped found Nationalista Party during the American occupation and has been associated with former President Manual Quezon and President Sergio Osmeña, the first two presidents of the Philippine Commonwealth.

All three sons served as representatives of the second and third districts of Camarines Sur, and held various local positions. Felix was governor from 1976 to 1986.

Felix’s son, Arnulfo Fuentebella, is the incumbent representative of the fourth district and the de facto leader of the clan.

The Deputy House Speaker entered politics in 1978 as representative of the 4th district in the Batasang Pambansa during the Martial Law era.

After losing the 1984 election, he made a comeback in 1992. After Arnulfo finished his maximum three terms in 2001—which included a 72-day stint as Speaker of the House from November 2000 to January 2001—he fielded his son Wimpy, who served one term in Congress.

Wimpy was part of the “brat pack” who initiated the move to impeach former Chief Justice Hilario Davide.

After Wimpy’s three-year term, his father Arnulfo ran again and won the 2004, 2007, and 2010 elections, cementing his grip on the 4th district.

On Thursday at 11 p.m., Wimpy was proclaimed by the Comelec board of canvassers despite an election protest from the camp of Aga Muhlach.

Earlier, tension gripped the political camps of Muhlach and Fuentebella.

About 5,000 supporters of Aga Muhlach from various areas of Partido thronged at the municipal hall claiming political maneuvering of the Fuentebellas.

Wimpy is the scion of a 105-year-old political dynasty in the Partido area of Camarines Sur whose constituents remain in dire poverty and records the highest cases of malnutrition and slow development.

Camarines Sur has been in the grip of political clans such as the Villafuertes, Fuentebellas, Andayas and Alfelors. They have been deciding the fate of the small fry politicos for over100 years.

Lately, new players in politics emerged such as Rep. Dato Arroyo (Lakas-CMD) of the second district who ran and won against outgoing governor Luis Raymund “LRay” Villafuerte.

Representative-elect lawyer Leni Robredo of the third district also won against Nelly Favis-Villafuerte. Reelected solons in Camarines Sur are those with acceptable and good track records that include Dato Arroyo, (second district) Salvio Fortuno (LP) of the fifth District, and Rolando Andaya of the 1st District.

Rhaydz B. Barcia

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