City Council’s inaction

By: Ricky Poca December 07,2015 - 11:00 PM

Last Wednesday, the BO-PK-dominated council still refused to act on the proposed Supplemental Budget 1 of the mayor despite the recent court ruling that said there is no conflict between the resolution and the ordinance.

Apparently, just like a teleserye, the BO-PK councilors took off from the motion for reconsideration filed by Romulo Torres on the decision of the court and asserted their consistency to act on the budget once a final decision is reached and it becomes executory.

While they await the final decision on the case, the projects and programs for the people of the city remain pending, like the payment of the SRP debt, the tipping fees for garbage collection and other city government obligations.

It remains a mystery to me why, on the one hand, national government entities like the BSP, Land Bank of the Philippines and others are in favor of the city government’s intention to pay off its loan for the creation of the SRP because they believe it to be in the best interests of the city and its constituents.

On the other hand, BO-PK councilors see no urgency in paying off the loan that has the city paying about P500 million a year just for the interest alone.

The money saved after the debt is paid could be used for some meaningful projects for the people of the city.

It has become increasingly obvious that the reason for the BO-PK councilors’ stance against acting on the proposed SB 1 is basically a political one.

They are worried that once the budget would be acted upon, it would give the administration enough money to come up with more projects that may be detrimental to the political interests of their master who intends to make a comeback in 2016.

But they forgot or chose to ignore the fact that ultimately, they are making the lives of the city’s constituents miserable. The garbage piling up in our barangays is a case in point, and yet they continue to turn a blind eye.

Mayor Rama is doing everything to have the SB 1 acted upon by the city council like going to the Ombudsman. Then we have city hall employees seeking relief from the court by filing a petition for mandamus to compel the city council to perform an act which is its duty to carry out.

But these take time. In the meantime, the people will have to continue to wait.

Ultimately, the people have the aces up their sleeves, for in the next elections, they can hold the city council accountable for their nonperformance of duty and responsibility.

Meanwhile, many remain hopeful that the Ombudsman, the DILG and the court would finally help the people of the city by resolving the controversy at the soonest possible time.

* * *

Lately, the survey results from various polling bodies show that Davao City Mayor Rodrigo “Digong” Duterte is leading the presidential race, followed by Vice President Binay and Senator Grace Poe, while administration candidate Mar Roxas occupies fourth place.

I really pity Mar Roxas whom I know personally to be an honest person and highly qualified and competent. I was hoping, probably like many others, that the blessing of the incumbent president would help Mar Roxas’ cause, but it has not, especially with the entry of Duterte in the race.

Digong Duterte has become very popular despite his use of gutter language and profanities because some people see him as the country’s only hope to curb criminality, corruption in government and the imperial Manila syndrome.
Recently, I heard Duterte unveil his plans to decongest the worsening traffic in Metro Manila and his program is very sensible.

Duterte intends to relocate the seaports and airport outside of Manila. He proposes the tapping of Clark International Airport, with a train system to be put up to transport people from Clark Airport to Metro Manila.

There are some quarters who doubt if Duterte can replicate what he has done in Davao City, but so far, his advocacy for a federal system of government is the most attractive and practical solution to the problems confronting our country today like the peace and order problem in Mindanao.

It would be best if all the presidential bets would unveil their programs to confront the multiple problems currently besetting our country.

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TAGS: BO-PK, Cebu, Cebu City, Cebu City Council, Supplemental Budget 1

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