Michael Rama takes oath as Cebu City mayor, Dondon Hontiveros as vice

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Cebu City (CNN Philippines, November 20) — Cebu City Vice Mayor Michael Rama took his oath of office as mayor on Saturday, following the death of his predecessor Edgardo Labella.

Councilor Donaldo “Dondon” Hontiveros also took his oath as the vice mayor.

Court of Appeals Associate Justice Gabriel Ingles officiated Rama's oath. Rama then administered the oath of Hontiveros.

Rama vowed to continue the programs and projects of Labella who died Friday morning due to septic shock secondary to pneumonia. His funeral is at Crystal Palace - Cosmopolitan Funeral Homes in Lahug.

Rama, who is seeking the mayoral post in the May 2022 polls, said he is saddened by the way he became mayor again. He was elected as mayor for two terms until 2016.

“This is not the way I wished to take the rein of the city government,” Rama said in a briefing. This has to happen, me and Dondon, to succeed by operation of law.”

Rama also dismissed comments that he is eager to assume the mayoral post. “It (The law) is very clear that when death comes, succession follows; otherwise, there is hiatus,” said Rama.

For his part, Hontiveros said, “This is not what we want to happen but of course there is a law that we have to follow. Again, never have I imagined that I will become a vice mayor."

“I may not be ready but I have these people around me then I would think I will be in the right place,” Hontiveros added.

Former City Councilor Jocelyn Pesquera will also assume the post vacated by Hontiveros in the City Council.