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Negros Occidental gov hopeful for approval of NIR in December

By: Carla Gomez - Philippine Daily Inquirer | March 04,2023 - 08:33 AM

Negros Occidental Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson for story: Negros Occidental gov hopeful for approval of NIR in December

Negros Occidental Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson | PHOTO: Provincial Government of Negros Occidental

BACOLOD CITY — Negros Occidental Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson has expressed hopes that the passage of a law creating the Negros Island Region (NIR) by December would be a nice Christmas gift.

Lacson was upbeat on Thursday, March 2, following the House of Representatives approval of House Bill 7355 seeking the creation of the NIR on second reading

The bill states that the new region will be composed of Negros Occidental, Negros Oriental and Siquijor.

“I think it’s really very positive. It looks like it’s really going to happen,” Lacson said.

He congratulated the Negros and Siquijor representatives for their efforts to see to it that the new region will happen.

“Since it passed on second reading, it looks like it will automatically pass on third and final reading in the Lower House,” he said.

“We will then have to wait for the Senate version,” he added, pointing out that many of the senators had made it a campaign promise to support the creation of the new region.

“If a law creating the new region is approved this year, there may no longer be a need for an executive order creating it,” he said.

Rep. Francisco Benitez of Negros Occidental’s third district also thanked the representatives of Negros and Siquijor, including Rep. Stephen Paduano of Abang Lingkod Partylist who have joined the push for the new region.

He also thanked Rep. Mercedes Alvarez of Negros Occidental’s sixth district who chaired the technical working group.

“We hope the Senate passes the bill in the soonest possible time. We look forward to the establishment of the NIR to the benefit of all Negrosanon,” Benitez said.

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