SAN ILDEFONSO, Bulacan–“Even if it’s a dog, as long as it is a Galvez, we will vote for them,” this word of mouth of folks in this town signifying their level of patronage and love to late former Mayor Honorato “Gener,” Galvez after he was killed twenty two years ago remains very strong and alive today.
The result of the May 9 elections once again nails a Galvez rule in the town for 30 years now and from the recent years, one member of the clan against the other.
Fernando “Gazo” Galvez Jr. unseated his younger cousin Mayor Carla Galvez-Tan with 264 marginal winning votes from 33,893-33629 votes.
Mayor-elect Gazo is the eldest son of Fernando Galvez, the eldest brother of the killed mayor.
Late former Mayor Gener was shot dead in June 2000 as he intends to run again for mayor of San Ildefonso in the May elections in 2001.
His younger brother, Edgardo “Sazo” Galvez, father of Tan took over the mayoral fight and won in 2001 polls amid an election protest filed by losing rival Romeo Venturina.
But his term was cut in April 23, 2002, after the the Commission on Elections upheld an earlier Bulacan court ruling in favor of Venturina for winning 545 votes.
Mayor Sazo however run again and won twice in 2004 and 2007 elections. He then served as mayor of San Ildefonso until 2010.
He had his daughter Tan ran in May 2010 election and won. She finished her term until 2013.
In her re-election bid in 2013, her father also tried running against her by filing his candidacy for the mayoralty but later withdrew it.Gerald Galvez, the eldest son of late Mayor Gener ran against Tan and won.
Mayor Gerald then ran for his second term in 2016 but was defeated by Tan. Tan sought second term reelection in 2019 and won. However, on May 9, she lost her third term to cousin Gazo.
Vice Mayor Rocky Galvez Sarmiento, another cousin, the running mate of Tan however won his re-election bid.
Because of the victory of Mayor-elect Gazo and re-election of Vice Mayor Sarmiento, the two top most positions in the town remain dominated by the Galvezes.
San Ildefonso’s major and faster phases of progress and development were seen and felt more during Tan’s time.
Mayor-elect Gazo’s camp however vowed to continue the pouring of investments in their beloved town.Former Mayor Gerald is reportedly on his camp.
It was in the time of slain Mayor Gener in 1989 when San Ildefonso started to gear to become a first class municipality.
He became controversial after he was charged and jailed but was later acquitted in the killing of Alvin Vinculado, 22 and wounding of his twin brother Levi and uncle Miguel Vinculado in November 1993 over a land quarrel.
The mayor then was implementing a road widening project in Poblacion when a heated argument between his security aid Godofredo Diego and the Viculado’s ensued.
He and Diego were charged of murder and double frustrated murder. Both of them were arrested and jailed. But the appellate court later acquitted Galvez on the grounds that it was Diego who without any order from him suddenly fired on the victims who were then about to attack the official.
The Vinculado’s brought to Supreme Court the appellate court’s acquittal until he was slain in 2000.
But despite the charges and the acquittal, Galvez finished his three term nine years rule as a well loved and hailed mayor of San Ildefonso from 1989-1998.
His colleague, then former San Rafael Mayor Jessie Viceo described him with a genuine heart in helping others, pro poor and is not an abusive leader.
The whole of San Ildefonso deeply mourn his death. His coffin was placed above a truck when he was about to be laid to his final rest similar to how former Senator Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino was buried. It was an actual whole San Ildefonso’s gloom and sorrow as tears poured upon the faces of almost all of its people.
“Even if it’s a dog, as long as it is a Galvez, we will vote for them,” was among the phrases and level of patronage of the people to the slain mayor and his family.
Pastor Ronnie Santos of Hesus ang Grasyosong Diyos Church from San Ildefonso town who used to work as a security aid of former Mayor Sazo continue to admire the family amid the divisiveness in the political clan. “Any among the Galvezes, it is their service to the people and their performance which San Ildefonso hail them for,” Santos said.
“It will remain for probably another decade and even more, only another Galvez can defeat a Galvez,” he added.