Tied mayoral election in the Philippines settled by the toss of a coin

Marvic Feraren and Boyet Py needed two rounds of flicking to end the impasse

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The Independent Online

The new mayor-elect of a small Filipino village won his position with the toss of a coin on Tuesday.

Marvic Feraren of the Liberal Party and the Nacionalista Party's Boyet Py both bagged 3,236 votes in the mayoral race in San Teodoro, Mindoro Oriental province, on Monday.

The Elections Commission suggested the two men flip a coin five times each, which is allowed under the country's Election Code to break a tie.

Reny Pagilagon, the election officer, told the Wall Street Journal: “I suggested a coin toss, with whoever flipping the most number of heads after five tries to be declared the winner.

"They agreed and when I searched my pocket for loose change, I found a five peso coin,” he said, adding that as rule, the coin must be tossed by the candidates above their heads and bounce at least once on the ground.

The two men battled it out in a bare-walled room, taking it in turns to flick the coin to the ground.

They tied in the first round, each flipping two heads after five goes, but the second round saw 49-year-old Feraren emerge victorious, flipping two heads to Mr Py’s one.

“It was a suspense thriller,” said Mayor-elect Feraren, who reportedly hugged his defeated rival after the contest.

According to ABS-CBN, the outcome was received without negative reaction in San Teodoro.