Emilio Mario Renner Osmeña: 21st Governor of the Province of Cebu

Emilio Mario Renner Osmeña also known as Lito Osmeña, was the 21st governor of Cebu Province.  He was born on September 11, 1938 in Cebu City, Cebu to Dr. Emilio V. Osmeña and Ma. Luisa Renner. He graduated with a degree of Bachelor of Science in Business Administration at the University of San Carlos, Cebu.

Former Cebu Governor Lito Osmeña

Lito, as he is often called, is married to Annette Versoza and has three children namely Mariano, Maria Luisa, and Emilio III. He has 8 grand children- Annette, Santino, Marie, Katrien, Alexander, Emilio IV, Illeana, and Julia.

Lito is part of the Osmeña clan, a very influential political family in the Philippines. Other prominent family members include senator Sergio Osmeña III, former senators John Henry Osmeña (Toledo City incumbent mayor) and Sergio Osmeña Jr., former Cebu City Mayor and north district representative Tomas Osmeña, former Philippine President Sergio Osmeña, Sr., former Cebu Vice Governor John Gregory Osmeña, as well as his sister, real estate developer Annabelle “Annie” Osmeña-Aboitiz.

Lito managed Hacienda Lugo. He developed Maria Luisa Estate Park, a family owned residential subdivision in Cebu City.

In the 1970s|70s, he was a political prisoner during Martial Law in 1973 at Fort Bonifacio for nine months and placed under house arrest for four years. During the late 70s he focused on developing real estate projects. It was not until the assassination of Ninoy Aquino that he got involve in politics and ran for governor in 1988.

After the reorganization of local governments and the ratification of the 1987 Constitution, he ran for the position of Governor for the province of Cebu in 1988 and won and held the position from 1988 to 1992.  He also chaired the League of Governors of the Philippines from 1990-1992.

During his term as Governor of Cebu, Osmeña was able to increase the provincial budget to 1 billion pesos per annum. He made possible the construction of flyovers and causeways, and purchased heavy equipment that caused the opening and maintenance of several barangay roads and bridges as well as the farm-to-market roads and began construction of the Trans Central Highway, connecting Cebu City to the West.

Osmeña served as Executive Vice President of Lakas-NUCD and Chief Economic Adviser of President Fidel V. Ramos from 1993 to 1997.

He chaired the Presidential Committee on Flagship Programs and Projects and finished or substantially undertook the following projects: The General Santos Airport, the Mactan Cebu International Airport, the upgrading of the Batangas port, the upgrading of the General Santos Seaport, the Rehabilitaiton of the Pan-Philippine Highway, the Quirino Highway, the Southern Tagalog Arterial Highway (Sto. Tomas-Lipa Section), C-5 Road (from South Luzon Expressway to Katipunan Avenue), the Metro Manila Skyway (Buendia to Bicutan), the Edsa/Boni underpass, the Kalayaan/EDSA flyover, the Ayala-Pasay Road interchange, the EDSA-Shaw flyover, the Bohol Circumferential Road, the Bataan Combined Cycle Power Plant (600MW), the Palimpinon Geothermal Plant (80MW), the Pagbilao Plant (700MW), the Upper Mahiao & Malitbog Geotherman Plant in Leyte (231MW), the Rehabilitaion of PNR South Line, MRT3, LRT2 and the Deregulation of the Telecom Sector.

0In 1997, he bolted from Lakas-NUCD and formed his own party called PROMDI Party (Progressive Movement for the Devolution of Initiatives/Probinsiya Muna Development Initiatives) that advocates for the development of the countryside through a federal form of government. With Ismael Sueño as his running mate, he ran for the position of President in the 11-way presidential election but lost to Joseph Estrada.

Osmeña returned to private life after the elections handling the party he founded as a party-list party. In the House of representatives, the party was represented by Joy Augustus Young.

Osmeña did not run in the 2004 elections and supported his former political rival Raul Roco for president. His party was disqualified in the party list elections, citing that the party was a national political party.

Emilio M. R. Osmena has filled his candidacy for the Senate in the 2010 May elections. The COMELEC had initially disqualified Osmeña, but revoked its decision in January 2010 after Osmeña proved that he had supporters and resources to campaign. The Comelec ruled that “Osmeña was not a political neophyte as shown by his experience as governor”.

The former governor said that the disqualification was brought by his full name, Emilio Mario Osmeña, which he wrote on his certificate of candidacy. Osmeña is popularly known as Lito Osmeña.

Osmeña’s preferred method of campaign is through modern technology. He said that being a senior citizen, he does not intend to be physically present in provinces to campaign.

Quick Facts

  • Born : September 11, 1938
  • Birth place : Cebu City, Cebu
  • Nationality : Filipino
  • Political party : Progressive Movement for the Devolution of Initiatives (PROMDI) (1997-present); Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats (1992-1997)
  • Spouse : Annette Versoza
  • Children : Mariano, Maria Luisa and Emilio III
  • Residence : Cebu City
  • Education :  Bachelor of Science in Business Administration at the University of San Carlos, Cebu
  • Religion : Roman Catholic


Source: Online

Edited: Heart Rizarri

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