Lamitan Council rejects Mayor Furigay’s proposed P300M loan PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 10 February 2012 13:37

LAMITAN, Basilan — The Lamitan City Council led by last termer Vice Mayor Arleigh W. Eisma rejected a resolution seeking to grant Mayor Roderick “Oric” Furigay the authority to enter a apply for a loan in the amount of P300 million from the Land Bank of the Philippines to finance 26 so-called tangible projects that are guaranteed to benefit Lamiteños.

Of the 12 members present during last Wednesday regular session, six voted in favor and the rest voted against the resolution.

Since simple majority is needed to dispose the measure properly, the Presiding Officer Vice-Mayor Eisma, without any hesitation and with firm decision, broke the tie by manifesting his strong opposition to the passage of the resolution.

Councilors who voted in favor were Joaquin Puri, Jr., Hegem Furigay, Ajid Dalawis, Clarito San Juan, Mannan Sumampil (ABC President) and Marisa Langkahan (SK Federation President). Councilors Jessica Eisma-Flores- Jaime Ortega, Jimmy Andong, Tito Ramos, Donel Ramos and Roy Mateo voted against the resolution.

During deliberation, Vice Mayor Eisma expressed support to the projects listed by Furigay but questioned the committee report presented by the Councilor Puri, chairman of the Committee on Appropriation, considering that such could not be considered as committee report since no hearing has been held by the Committee of the Whole, which was tasked to discuss the request of Furigay.

Eisma expressed disgust on Puri not providing the Council the breakdown of the listed priority projects which were announced by Furigay during his State-of-the-City Report.

On the other hand, Puri clarified that before he presented the matter last Wednesday, six committee hearings were called since last year,  but quorum could not be determined because only six of the 13 members, including Eisma, were in attendance.

“Time is of the essence. As a representative of the people and I see the importance of the projects, I decided to throw before the August body the request of Mayor Furigay. Unfortunately, we failed to muster the needed vote. But we respect the decision of the seven members including the vote of the vice mayor,” Puri said.

Among those priority projects are construction of a 2-storey infirmary hospital, 2-storey shopping center, senior citizen building, improvement of street lighting, acquisition of 50 barangay emergency service vehicles, construction of school buildings for Madraza, acquisition of lot for sanitary landfill, construction of water reservoir, housing project for the LGU employees, irrigation canal, assistance for rubber seedling for small rubber growers, construction of mini-gymnasium, construction of 40 units market stalls for agricultural products, and many other tangible projects which the mayor believes could benefit the Lamiteños.

Meanwhile, Mayor Furigay described the Council’s action on the resolution as anti-development, adding that those who voted against are “responsible for killing the dream of the Lamiteños.”

“The priorities are not mine alone. Those are projects that Lamiteños need. While it is true that not all could be implemented during my tenure, at least, the next mayor would not have the headache of sourcing out funds to finance the projects,” Furigay said as he clarified that his priorities have been supported by 43 out of 45 barangay chairmen in Lamitan through a resolution approved during the Liga ng mga Barangay meeting with Sumampil as its president.

In disgust, Sumampil reportedly tore into pieces the Liga ng mga Barangay resolution right after the session.

“It was a democracy in action. But until now, I could not still fully understand their reasons,” Furigay said as he suspects that politics is the reason behind the disapproval.

It was learned that Eisma is eyeing for the mayoralty post in 2013 against Furigay’s anointed bet. — Jimmy Villaflores