Long-time mayor of Bacolod City Evelio Leonardia has lost his charm to a billionaire and businessman Alfredo “Albee” Benitez in the 2022 local election after securing only 38.46% out of the 279,340 votes.
His opponent, who is a first-time candidate for mayor of the city with over 300,000 voters, got 171,893 votes or representing the majority of votes at 61.53%.
Based on the Election Returns, Benitez secured a substantial lead in almost all barangays, overtaking even Leonardia’s votes in 2019 senatorial election which was only at 144,776.
Benitez had previously served as the representative of the third district of Negros Occidental before joining the Bacolod politics. His decision was triggered by a vendor at Bacolod Central Market who had been clamoring for change.
With him as the city mayor, Benitez hopes to realize a good working relationship between the city and the provincial government. In the coming day, he said he will start working for his transition team to ensure a smooth transfer of power.
Meanwhile, incumbent Congressman Greg Gasataya also garnered the highest vote for a local candidate in the city, that was previously claimed be Leonardia when he won as mayor in 2019. Based on the Certificate of Canvass, the third-termer congressman got 185,470 votes, representing 69.13% of the votes casted.