Celso: ‘Council’s award defining moment of our administration’ PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 12 March 2013 11:34

Mayor Celso Lobregat yesterday hailed Vice Mayor Cesar Iturralde and the members of the City Council for garnering the Award of Excellence—2012 Local Legislative Award making it the country’s most outstanding Sangguniang Panlungsod for highly urbanized/ independent component cities category.

“On a personal note, this is a defining moment for our administration”, Lobregat said when presented with the plaques and the accompanying incentives by Iturralde and the councilors during the flag raising ceremony in front of City Hall yesterday morning. “This is the only time in 76 years in the history of the Local Government of Zamboanga that the Sangguniang Panlungsod was adjudged as most outstanding [legislative body] in the entire country”.

The City Council was conferred the award by the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) and the Philippine Councilors’ League (PCL) during the 2013 End-Term PCL Assembly in Manila last March 7, “in recognition of its accomplishments in local legislation that ultimately contributed to the attainment of desirable socio-economic and environmental management outcomes.”

Accompanying Iturralde in presenting the plaque to Mayor Lobregat and the City Government officials and employees yesterday were Councilors Rudy Lim, Nonong Guingona, Mike Alavar, Myra Paz Abubakar, Lilia Nuño, Abdurahman Nuño, Luis Biel III, Eddie Saavedra, Joana Mas, Rey Candido, Percival Ramos, VP Elago and Rodolfo Bayot together with City Secretary Zenaida Jayme.

Lobregat affirmed that because of the City Council’s all out support to the administration, the City’s infrastructure record has reached 3,833 projects amounting to P5.4 billion for the period 2007-2012.

“To implement the projects you need appropriations and ordinances and they [SP members] approved all the annual budgets and supplemental budgets needed to accomplish all these projects”, the mayor said stressing that it is also because of the support of the City Council that the barangays have evolved into growth centers in view of the record number of infrastructure projects such as roads, flood control, school buildings and other related projects, as well as barangay halls and health centers and support to some national agencies.

“I can cite all these and the City Council has been a very big part in all these accomplishments”, Lobregat said as he also thanked the people of Zamboanga for the trust and confidence given to the administration starting in 1998 during the time of the late Mayor Maria Clara Lobregat until his term in 2004 and 2010 by electing the mayor, the vice mayor and the clear majority of the City Council.

He hoped that the people, whoever they will elect as next mayor of Zamboanga will give the mayor the full confidence and support by electing also the vice mayor and the majority City Council of the same mayor.

“To all the members of the Sangguniang Panlungsod, mas facil ya keda el mi trabajo because of your all out support”, he said.

Contrary to accusations by some quarters, Lobregat said the City Council is not a rubber stamp legislative body stressing that “no rubber stamp City Council will be given the Award of Excellence in the entire country” as what it did to the Zamboanga City Council.

For his part, Vice Mayor Iturralde said the award is dedicated to the people of Zamboanga stressing that without the people, the legislative body could not have achieved it.

He likewise emphasized that the award  is owed to the support of Mayor Lobregat, whom he dubbed as outstanding role model on good governance. “Ohala este honor ay sirvi como inspiracion y simbolo para todo kita ay continua servi enbuenamente con el Ciudad y maga residente”. — Sheila Covarrubias