ACING THE MAYORSHIP
He never eyed being a public servant, but Bocaue, Bulacan Mayor Eduardo “JJV” Villanueva, Jr. is surpassing
By Camille Cabal
PHOTOGRAPHY BY ROMEO S. PERALTA, JR.
It is often said that we could never have too much of a good thing. Bocaue, Bulacan residents, however, have chosen to have more of a good thing—good governance, to be precise. With 12 years of experience as local chief executive of Bocaue, Bulacan, Mayor Eduardo “JJV” Villanueva, Jr. is back to continue the projects that his sister, the late Mayor Eleanor “Joni” Villanueva- Tugna had started.
Villanueva’s sister was known as Bocaue’s “toss-coin mayor” as her 2016 victory was determined by a coin toss after she tied with her opponent. With her first term being marked by relentless efforts to serve her constituents, she went on to have a landslide victory in her 2019 reelection bid.
The lady mayor, however, succumbed to an illness barely a year into her second term. When she died, Villanueva believed that there was no one else better to continue her journey but his brother-inlaw. However, the latter suggested that Villanueva come back and continue the family’s tradition of public service.
Villanueva felt it best to answer the call to service. As before, he could not leave the people of Bocaue in someone else’s hands, who does not have the same heart for them as he. After all, he had been the city’s mayor for three terms prior.
About two decades ago, Villanueva was practically shuttling to and from the United States (US) where his family was based. When he finished his first term as mayor in 2004, he thought he was done for good and would be able to enjoy the rest of his time with his family in the US. He, however, came back to serve Bocaue once again as mayor from 2007 to 2016.
THE MAYOR’S JOURNEY
The young Villanueva had only two dreams: to be a lawyer and a basketball player. His college days at the University of Santo Tomas (UST) gave him hope he can achieve both. Unfortunately, he was forced to stop going to school because of an unforeseeable incident.
Villanueva, who was not just a student but also a varsity player, was severely affected. Due to his strong desire to continue his basketball career, ....