Mountain Province mourns death of its former governor
Bontoc, Mtn. Prov.– For three days now, the Philippine Flag has been flown at half-mast in front of the Provincial Capitol as a sign of mourning for the passing away of Atty. Jaime K. Gomez, Sr., former governor of Mountain Province.
Gomez joined the Holy Creator on the dawn of December 25, 2020. He just celebrated his 95th birthday on December 10, 2020.
Gomez served as governor from 1971 to June 1979 and as vice governor from January 1968 to December 1969.
Per FB post of Bontoc ex-Councilor Ciriaco Filog, the late ex-Governor Gomez was instrumental in the success of many past undertakings which greatly benefitted the province. Gomez’s great political will and leadership helped win the fight against the building of the Chico River dam during the Marcos regime. Other significant contributions include the opening of the Bontoc-Mainit-Maligcong Provincial Road, the establishment of the Mountain Province Community College, the Mountain Province College which has later evolved to become the present Mountain Province State Polytechnic College and the conversion of Mountain Province High School to Mountain Province General Comprehensive High School.
Atty. Gomez is also the last among the founding members of the Bontoc Cherwai Fraternity to cross the Great Divide. The Cherwai group was a brotherhood among Bontoks in the capital town back in the ’60s. The other members were Lawrence Ittang, Ignacio Acofo, Atanacio Sr. Afidchao, Jerome Sr. Fagsao, Eusebio Ekid, Judge George Macliing, Edward Calaoa, Valentin Faliao and Mauricio Pancho.
In 1963, however, Calaoa who was then with the Bureau of Treasury of the old Mountain Province died. His son, former Provincial Attorney Einstein Calaoa (the one seated in the old picture of the Cherwai Frat) took his place making him the youngest among the club members.
“He (Gomez) was also the initiator and leader of the Cherway club… this was the first and one of its kind formal political group in his time,” Roger Ekid, nephew of Eusebio Ekid, said.** From the Provincial Government of Mountain Province FB page