Leaving a Mark in Bagong Silang
Villanueva talks about his brand
of leadership and the legacy he
wants to leave behind.
BY KAREN TERESE ROJAS
PHOTOGRAPHY BY ROMEO PERALTA, JR.
MARCH - APRIL 2022
At 26 years old, Mark Anthony Villanueva became the youngest barangay chairperson of Brgy. Bagong Silang in Imus, Cavite. Many who are at that age would often get married, start building their own families, and begin a new chapter in their personal lives. For Villanueva, a neophyte public official, this was the time for him to start introducing a young, new brand of leadership and service to his kababayans in Imus.
FOLLOWING IN HIS FATHER’S FOOTSTEPS
Villanueva is the son of Edward Villanueva, the first barangay chairperson of Brgy. Bagong Silang established in Imus. The former barangay chairperson was appointed by the late Governor Johnny Remulla, the father of incumbent Cavite Governor Jonvic Remulla.
“Back in the earlier days, our general area in Cavite still had that notorious reputation as ‘tapunan ng mga pina-salvage (dumping ground for victims of extrajudicial killing),’” Villanueva says. He further says that during his father’s time as barangay chairperson, funds were close to none as their barangay had just been established. “Walang pondo. Abono dito, abono doon (We had no funds. We had to dig into our own pockets),” he adds.
“Noong bata kasi ako, every time may session [‘yung] daddy ko, may meeting sila, nandoon lagi ako sa tabi niya nakabuntot ako. Kahit nagse-session sila, doon lang ako sa tabi niya, nakikinig lang ako so medyo
maaga akong na-expose (As a young boy, I would tag along with my dad whenever.....