Hon. Edsel A. Galeos

 

Municipal Mayor of Argao

 

In office

Since June 30, 2007

 

Vice-Mayors

Hon. Azucena M. Sesaldo

 

 

Hon. Stanley S. Caminero

 

Preceded by

Hon. Wilfredo S. Caminero

 

National Consultant for Waterworks

 

In office

2008 – 2010

 

Appointed by

President Gloria M. Arroyo

 

Personal details

 

Birth

March 12, 1959

Argao, Cebu, Phils.

 

Spouse

Grace Flores Sarmago

 

Children

Ian Galeos, Grazel Galeos, Eron Galeos

 

Political party

One Cebu (2007 – present)

 

Alma Mater

Cebu Institute of Technology

 

Occupation

Engineer, Businessman

 

Religion

Roman Catholicism

 

Hon. Edsel Amatong Galeos (born March 12, 1959) is an Argawanon businessman, engineer, and politician and has served as mayor of the municipality of Argao since 2007. He comes from a long line of public servants and is known throughout Argao as the town's "re-inventor". He has been known to be a breath of fresh air when it comes to Argawanon politics due to his non-patronage approach to dealing with the town's residents. His affiliation with the One Cebu (which was under the beleaguered political party of former Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's anointed candidate, Gilbert "Gibo" Teodoro, Jr.) caused him some lost votes from the intelligentsia of Argao. Still, his personal touch and non-political style in politics has endeared him to the people of Argao.


Early years

Edsel Galeos was the sixth of seven children of Jesus Mondragon Galeos and Vicenta Albina Amatong, former public school teachers. He was born on March 12, 1959 in Argao and spent his elementary years in town. By his own admission his family was not well-off; although the Galeoses and Mondragons and the Amatongs are descended from various powerful and wealthy families such as Ceballos, Lucero, Kintanar, and Espina, by the time Edsel was born the family was already struggling. In an interview with The Freeman, he noted that "he did not enjoy a comfortable life while he was growing up. He would walk to school everyday, had only one pair of pants and had to give up his dream of becoming a doctor because his family could not afford to send him to medical school. He instead took up engineering and relied on a scholarship so he could finish college. He strived hard to become successful, thinking that he would not let his children go through the same hardships that he went through.1"
However, as characterized by many of his family members, he was a resourceful and hardworking individual who eventually finished a degree in engineering.
He married Grace Flores Sarmago, two years his junior and a sixth cousin through the Flores line, on September 8, 1989, in Argao, Cebu. Their children are Ian (b. 1990), Grazel (b. 1991), and Eron (b. 1997).

Ancestry & Relationships with other leaders

Edsel Galeos, like his predecessor, has an all-Argawanon family tree and is related to practically every politician of Argao since the Spanish period. Below is Galeos's pedigree chart.

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Edsel Galeos pedigree chart (click to enlarge)

Relationship with other Argawanon leaders

Because of his principalia roots, Mayor Galeos is related to almost all of the former mayors, municipal presidents, capitanes municipal and gobernadorcillos of Argao, some more than once. He is related to 25 of the 34 other leaders.
Direct Relationships
Edsel Galeos is the:
  • Great-great-great-grandson and also the first cousin 5X removed of Don Ysidoro Mondragon.
  • Great-great-great-grandson and also the first cousin 5X removed of Don Vicente Espina.

Multiple Indirect Relationships
  • Second cousin twice removed, third cousin 3X removed, and third cousin 4X removed of Mayors Jose and Jesus Lucero Kintanar.
  • Third cousin once removed, fourth cousin once removed, and third cousin twice removed of Mayor Gaudencio Pena.

Double Indirect Relationships
  • Fourth cousin twice removed and third cousin and 4X removed of Municipal President Don Antonio Minoza and Mayor Eliseo Minoza.
  • Great-grandnephew and second cousin4X removed of Presidente Municipal Don Victor Espina.

Single Indirect Relationships
  • Great-great-great-great-nephew of Gobernadorcillo Don Pedro Alverto Flores.
  • First cousin 4X removed of Don Roman Kintanar.
  • First cousin 5X removed of Don Apolonio Calderon
  • First cousin 5X removed of Don Lucas Lucero.
  • Second cousin 4X removed of Capitan Municipal Don Manuel Ceballos.
  • Third cousin twice removed of Mayors Isidro Kintanar and Vicente Kintanar.
  • Third cousin 3X removed of Gobernadorcillo Don Diego Saniel.
  • Third cousin 4X removed of Presidente Municipal Don Lorenzo Albarracin.
  • Fourth cousin 3X removed of guerilla leader Hilario P. Davide, Sr.
  • Fifth cousin once removed of Mayor Emilio T. Reyes.
  • Sixth cousin twice removed of Mayor Antonio A. Almirante, Jr.

Indirect Relationships through Wife
  • Great-great-nephew and second cousin 4X removed of Cresenciana Espina, wife of Municipal President Don Mariano Abear.
  • Third cousin once removed, fifth cousin once removed, fourth cousin 3X removed, sixth cousin twice removed of Vice-mayor Azucena D. Minoza, wife of Mayor Daniel L. Sesaldo.
  • First cousin 3X removed and third cousin 3X removed of Hilaria Abear, wife of Municipal President Don Carlos Montenegro.
  • Third cousin 3X removed and second cousin 5X removed of sisters Saturnina and Eduviges Albores, wives of Municipal Presidents Don Cristeto Villahermosa and Don Cornelio Minoza.


Political Career

After the end of Wilfredo Caminero’s term in 2007 the political factions of Argao once more gathered to see who can best serve the town as mayor. Before long, an unlikely candidate was found in the person of Edsel Galeos, a successful engineer and businessman who was, in all respects, a newbie at politics. Edsel Galeos’s entry to politics was unconventional. He had just recovered from a serious illness which almost killed him, and his second lease at life was what finally convinced him to run for mayor. In a speech he gave in 2008 during the Garbo 400 Awards Night: "As some of you may know, I was seriously ill throughout most of 2006. But I made a deal with God. I vowed to Him that if He were to give me another chance, another shot at life, I would dedicate every waking second of it to Him. I do not know what I have done to deserve a second chance at life, but when I was declared cured from my illness I agreed to run for mayor of Argao after various political leaders and members of different sectors requested me to run for office. By the grace of God, I have been blessed with the cooperation and dedication of most of our employees. We have been showered with financial support from both the government and our own citizens."
After getting the support of various political factions and interest groups in town Edsel Galeos embarked on a campaign of honesty, integrity, work dedication, discipline, performance, and transparency. Initially, a former councilor of Mayor Caminero, Alfredo Lanticse, ran for mayor as well but backed out of the race at the very last minute. Thus, Edsel Galeos’s candidacy was unopposed.

Mayor Galeos’s First 100 Days. Mayor Edsel Galeos, upon starting his administration, was guided by two slogans: the first, “Sa atong panaghi-usa ug pagpakabana, kalambo-an sa Argao” – through our unity and awareness, progress for Argao; and the second, “Lihok Argao! Kung dili ikaw, kinsa man? Kung dili karon, kanus-a man?” – Move forward (or work) Argao! If not us, who? If not now, when?”. These were the inspirations of Mayor Galeos when he reached out to the various sectors of Argao to encourage them to support him.
Mayor Galeos immediately consulted with the various sectors of the town to help identify the priorities for his first 100 days in office. The different departments of the municipality were reorganized and the administration called for the reiteration of commitment of all employees. A general clean-up and uplift of the different offices and surrounding areas of the pueblo was started with the newly created Mayor’s Action Team taking the lead. The municipal plaza was given a complete make-over and improved with new plants, benches, and landscaping. Lights and sound and internet connection was installed in the plaza. The make-over of the plaza, renamed the Argao Unity Plaza, impressed many officials from the province and Governor Garcia even once called it the most beautiful plaza in the whole of Cebu.
The town’s public market was also improved, with additional spaces provided to vendors. Bleachers were constructed at the farmers’ trading post. Also, a motor poll site at barangay Canbanua was fenced off to serve as a garage for all vehicles of the local government, which include heavy equipments and other municipal properties. Public terminals were constructed and established for the benefit of both the passengers and public utility vehicle operators. Other projects included road asphalting, construction of a roasting area at the abattoir, improvement of the municipal stage and tennis court.

The new administration also called on the support of the barangay captains. Above all, the town became a leader in e-governance with the implementation of full computerization for all government transactions. Through the creation of an IT office with Mr. Querubin Lucero Momongan taking the lead, the municipality was able to fully automate the Real Property Tax Assessment, Collection and Delinquency Tracking System. Other computer application programs developed and now being used include New Government Accounting System, Treasury Operations, Police Crime Tracking System, Human Resources Management and Information System, Infrastructure Project Inventory and Payroll System, Botica ng Barangay Order, Sales and Inventory Form, and Web Development and Hosting System. After having been acknowledged on the success of its civil applications system automation, Mayor Galeos received one unit of Enterprise Server from the Presidential Management Staff of the Office of the President, through Honorable Cerge M. Remonde, Director General of PMS. This gift was given Argao in recognition of the IT Department’s being the champion of eGovernance among LGU’s nationwide. With the acquisition of an Enterprise Server, the dream of connecting Argao to the world has become a reality. The Local Broadband Network, also known as WI-MAX, project is in its initial stage now and before long twenty (20) barangays will be enjoying free internet and voice communication through VOIP. It is expected that by 1st quarter of 2009, all forty-five (45) barangays will be electronically connected to the municipality. With the connection of all barangays, the Municipality’s services can be accessed at the Barangay level. The residents, especially those at the upland areas, may pay their taxes at their respective barangay. This monumental project is a testament of Mayor Galeos’ commitment to bring Argao to the world stage in Information Technology and is just one of the many life-changing projects that Mayor Galeos has initiated for the Municipality of Argao. The town also launched, in 2009, the eBayad system where people may also start paying their taxes and other government-related transactions in the comforts of their home.
National Consultant for Waterworks. In 2008, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo designated Mayor Edsel Galeos as a consultant for the National Government’s water projects, impressed as she was by the southern town’s irrigation scheme. Arroyo, who visited Argao last May 19, 2008, saw the system that, for only P300,000, has benefited about 80 families without using any electricity.

According to then Presidential Management Staff Chief Cerge Remonde, the President was very impressed with this because as this was part of the government’s program, especially since the Philippines has been confronted with the global food crisis and the government has been trying to enhance food production. So, she immediately ordered the National Irrigation Administration to go to Argao to study the Galeos model. She then appointed Mayor Galeos as a national consultant for small irrigation projects.

Although Mayor Galeos was no longer eligible to receive a separate salary as consultant because he was already a government official, as an incentive President Arroyo promised to give Argao P20,000 for every small irrigation project that the mayor can help create elsewhere in the country.

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The Pres. Diosdado Macapagal Sports and Cultural Center
The Pres. Diosdado Macapagal Sports and Cultural Center
. Mayor Galeos, with the assistance of Sec. Cerge Remonde, was able to acquire financial aid from the national government through the Department of Public Works and Highways in the amount of 20 million pesos purposely for the construction of the long dreamed Sports and Cultural Center. The total project cost was estimated to reach 40 million pesos including equipments, fixtures, landscape, and other requirement for the operation and maintenance of a sports and cultural complex. The project was implemented by administration in as much as Mayor Galeos himself is a civil engineer and a practitioner. Moreover, the municipality had sufficient heavy equipment for deployment in the project implementation. The mode of implementation helped the local government unit of Argao save about thirty-five per cent of the project cost.
Being an engineer himself, Mayor Galeos’s thrust in governance has been focused on infrastructure. Asphalting and construction of roads, rehabilitation of schools, and many more have so far been implemented by the mayor.
2nd term. In 2010 Mayor Galeos ran for a second term under the administration ticket of Governor Garcia's One Cebu Party. Despite his running under the Garcia-Soco ticket, almost everyone in Argao voted for the Liberal Party's official candidates, Argawanon Hilario "Jun-Jun" P. Davide III and his running mate Vice-Governor Greg Sanchez.


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