Celso to city dads: ‘Rise on your own merit and not at the expense of others’ PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 20 July 2016 11:53

By DEXTER YAP

District 1 Congressman Celso Lobregat delivered a message to the members of the Sangguniang Panlungsod (City Council) with a strong emphasis on their great importance and the significance of each of their respective decision cognizant to the progress of the city.

In his message, Lobregat mentioned two significant quotes from national hero Dr. Jose Rizal: “Ang hindi marunong lumingon sa pinanggalingan ay hindi makakarating sa paroroonan....” and “Build on the foundation and successes of the past instead of destroying them. Rise on your own merit and not at the expense of others.”

The two quotes from the solon’s speech raised the eyebrows of those from the gallery as some tried to speculate on who was the target of Lobregat.

The veteran legislator opened his message by thanking the Almighty and the city’s patron saint Nuestra Señora La Virgen del Pilar for the guidance, help and protection given him, the people and the city of Zamboanga.

He also acknowledged the constituents of District 1 who gave their strong confidence in him by re-electing him for another term as their representative to the 17th Congress.

Lobregat looked back at his maiden speech when he was elected Congressman of District 1 in 2013, during which he said “…And I also congratulate the Sangguniang Panlungsod for having been proclaimed as the best Sangguniang Panlungsod in the entire country for the year 2012. This was achieved not because of the quantity but most especially because of the quality and relevance of the ordinances passed and the excellent relationship between the Legislative and Executive Branches of Government…”

Lobregat also cited five councilors who were members of the Most Outstanding Sangguniang Panlungsod of batch 2010-2013 and were also members of the 2013-2016 City Council and are no longer city councilors – Councilor Gerky Valesco who ended his third term and did not pursue further his political career; Councilor Eddie Saavedra; Councilor Noning Biel who graduated and ran for vice-mayor and Councilors Percival Ramos and Councilor VP Elago.

He acknowledged Councilor Percival Ramos’ advocacy for good government and his exposé on the P38 million overpriced medical van. A vicious and relentless attack was carried out against him, his family and his candidacy.

“If it is any consolation,” Lobregat said,”he (Ramos) fought a good fight and was now vindicated as last July 4, 2016 it was headlined in one of the local dailies that the purchase of the controversial mobile clinic has been cancelled. For whatever reasons are given and will be given for the cancellation, the solon thanked Councilor Ramos for saving and protecting the precious funds of the city.

At the same time, Lobregat lauded Councilor VP Elago,  whose candidacy was seriously affected when after seven councilors branded him and others “saboteurs” and “anti-development” because he was one of those who did not outrightly approve the nine contracts submitted to the council in a special session called one day before the election ban, most of which were negotiated contracts.

“Councilor VP, it was a sad and unfortunate loss as none of you are saboteurs and anti-development. An example of one of these nine contracts is the cnstruction of the San Roque National High School 2-storey 8 classroom building. A visit to the site of San Roque National High School would show that as I speak, the site is not yet ready and it is impossible to construct a 2-storey, 8 classroom building even now, as the site development is still on going. The site development of the San Roque National High School only started May 24, 2016. 15 days after elections, and the project duration is 160 days,” Lobregat said.

Aside from the five Councilors mentioned, Congressman Lobregat also cited another incumbent Councilor who did not make it in the last elections, Councilor Elong Natividad.            The solon also reiterated to all incoming elected officials the messages he imparted during the Inaugurals last June 30, 2016.

“Unlike in the past elections, the results of this election and considering the present ex-officio members, do not show a clear majority. However, rest assured that our group of elected councilors will support any and all programs of the City Government as long as and only as long as they are for the good and welfare of our people,” Lobregat said.

Leading to his inaugural message last June 30, 2016, Congressman Lobregat stressed that as the congressman of Zamboanga City, he will be fighting and standing firm for Zamboanga City’s interest in terms of possible legislation of the Bangsamoro and Federalism. He shall be focusing on the creation of the Mindanao Power Corporation, the realization of the Mindanao Railway System, legislation on the Pasonanca Watershed, completion of the Zamboanga City Bypass Road, continuation of the widening of the west coast road, the construction of Zamboanga City’s Urban Core Flood Mitigation, including a pumping station, a flyover at the junction of Veterans-Camins-MCLL highway, the continuing modernization and expansion of the Zamboanga City Medical Center, and will be supportive of ZAMCELCO’s Investment Management Contract and the construction of a water impounding dam for potable water and other water protocols. — Dexter Yap