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One of three priests-turned-politicians wins election bid

MANILA (Agencies): Only one of the three Catholic priests-turned politicians succeeded in their election bids for public office.

Father Jeemar Vera Cruz, from the Iligan diocese, was proclaimed the new vice-mayor of Iligan City for a first term on May 10.

Vera Cruz, former vicar general of the diocese, defeated acting vice-mayor Providencio Abragan by over 12,000 votes.

Meanwhile, two other priests lost their election bids in Northern Samar province.

According to the results from the Commission on Elections, Father Walter Cerbito, who is former vicar general of the Catarman diocese, lost his gubernatorial bid to incumbent governor, Jose Ong Jr.

As at May 11, Ong led the tally with a total of 176,991 votes with Cerbito trailing in second place with only around 69,000 votes, according to a report from CBCP News.

Retired priest, Jack Sapa, also from the same diocese, failed to win for councillor in the provincial capital of Catarman.

All three have been suspended from their priestly ministries since announcing their intention to run in the recent elections.

Church law bars priests from running for public office or accepting a position that includes the exercise of civil power. 

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