Gary Alejano is a Filipino soldier and politician. In the May 13, 2019 election, he ran for senator but he did not make it to the Top-12 winning candidates. Previously, he served as a representative in the 17th Philippine Congress as the first nominee of Magdalo Party List.
Name: Gary Cajolo Alejano, Sr.
Birthdate: 22 January 1973
Birthplace: Sipalay City, Negros Occidental, Philippines
Father: A farmer
Mother: Teacher “Mamang Lica”
Wife: Minerva Cojuangco of Bamban, Tarlac
Children: Martine Gwyneth and Micah Gabrielle, Maxine Gail, Gary Alejano Jr., and Gian Marcus
Gary attended the University of Cebu (formerly Cebu Central Colleges) taking up Electrical Engineering for two years from 1989 to 1991. He continued his studies at the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) where he finished Bachelor of Science in Naval System Engineering in 1995 as a member of Marilag Class. He pursued graduate studies at the University of the Philippines where he finished Masters of Management and a certificate in New Enterprise Planning. In 2016, along with other students from 23 countries, he attended the program for Senior Executives in National and International Security of the Harvard Kennedy School.
After his graduation from PMA, he was assigned various roles in the Philippine Marine Corps where he rose to become a captain. He saw action in the military’s quest to fight the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in Western Mindanao particularly in the provinces of Sulu and Basilan. In 2000, he was part of the campaign to capture Camp Abubakar and was assigned to secure areas in Matanog, Maguindanao. At this time, he was “wounded in action” and for his bravery, he received the Distinguished Conduct Star and other awards. His appeal to be awared the Medal For Valor (Filipino: Medalya ng Kagitingan, the highest award that the country’s Armed Forces can bestow) is still on process.
Gary Alejano was one of the founders of Magdalo organization, officially registered under the name Samahang Magdalo, Inc. (SMI). This group was formed while some 300 soldiers including Gary were in detention for their participation in the Oakwood Mutiny in 2003. The participants of the said mutiny claimed to have been radicalized due to widespread poverty in the countryside and corruption in the highest echelons of government. They wanted then President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo to resign.
In 2010, Gary was released from detention and was given amnesty by President Benigno Aquino III. Upon release, Gary went around the country to establish regional as well as provincial chapters of the group. In 2013, the group’s membership swelled to more than 200,000. As a registered party-list organization with the Commission on Election (COMELEC), it participated in the election of that year, winning two seats, one for him as the number one nominee and the other seat for Francisco Ashley Acedillo. In the 2016 election, Magdalo secured only one seat and thus only Gary Alejano returned to become a member of the 17th Congress.
As a member of Congress, Gary was able to file hundreds of bills and resolutions but only a few were passed into laws. He also initiated over a hundred infrastructure projects such as roads, school buildings, water services and flood control projects. For all of his untiring efforts and dedication to public service, he was named as one of the “TOP Congressman of the Philippines” by the Publishers Association of the Philippines.
In 2017, Representative Gary Alejano filed an impeachment case against President Rodrigo Duterte, accusing him of violating the constitution and alleging crime against humanity, among other reasons. The case was immediately dismissed. Together with Senator Trillanes, he went to The Hague to submit supplemental documents in support of the human rights complaint against the president filed earlier by lawyer Jude Sabio at the International Criminal Court. In 2018, he was also one of the congressmen to file an impeachment case against seven associate justices of the Supreme Court. Again, the case was junked right away by the justice committee.