TAGUM, Davao del Norte – Local politics in Davao del Norte starts to heat up as opposing rivals hit the campaign trail on Friday night in their respective bailiwick.

Re-electionist 1st District Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez, carrying the banner of the Partido ng Demokratikong Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban), said his team is offering a better service to lift the province from being one of the 40 poor provinces in the country.

The agenda of the local PDP-Laban included free medical services, zero billing in the state-run Davao Regional Hospital in Tagum and the Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC), scholarship for the youth, and ready emergency assistance.

Alvarez and his team held its proclamation campaign at the Tagum City city hall grounds.

On his team are incumbent mayors Allan Rellon of Tagum City, Al David Uy of the Island Garden City of Samal and Edgardo Timbol of Kapalong town.

There are eight municipalities and three cities in Davao del Norte.

Alvarez is up against incumbent Davao del Norte Governor Anthony del Rosario, who is running under the banner of Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP). Del Rosario is HNP’s secretary general.

Alvarez has fielded his former chief of staff, Edwin Jubahib, against HNP’s Rodney del Rosario for governor of Davao del Norte.

Incumbent vice governor Alan Dujali will challenge re-electionist Antonio “Tonyboy” Floirendo for the second district

Rellon, meanwhile, said they are aiming to get 80 percent of the province’s voting populace. Tagum City has the highest number of voters of around 137,000.

On the other hand, the Floirendo and del Rosario-led HNP held a motorcade in Panabo City on Friday afternoon to kick off their campaign. This was followed by a proclamation rally in the town of Carmen at 4 p.m and at 7 p.m in Sto. Tomas town. (PNA)