Thursday, 03 May 2012 11:14
“Nakakatawa pala ang konseho ninyo dito sa Zamboanga.” This was the reaction of a Manila observer who asked for anonymity when the members of the august body debated lengthily on an irrelevant issue during the regular council session yesterday.
The hotly debates stemmed from the resolution authored by Councilor Cesar Jimenez Jr. calling Mayor Celso Lobregat to comment on the propriety of using his name as acronym on the brand new China-made pick-up vehicles being distributed to the different barangays.
Jimenez observed the acronym Community Environment Livelihood Security and Order (CELSO) printed on the side of every vehicle violates the circular of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) that prohibits officials of any Local Government Units to post pictures or names on facilities owned by the government.
Councilor Rommel Agan supported Jimenez’ edict even quoting statements made by DILG Sec. Jesse Robredo during a barangay forum held at the Astoria Regency months who emphasized officials who continue to violate the circular should be ashamed of themselves since the funds used for the project comes from the coffers of the government. “Napakawalanghiya nila,” Agan quoted Robredo as saying.
At this juncture, Vice Mayor Cesar Iturralde ordered the secretary to strike from the official records Robredo’s word “Napakawalanghiya Nila” saying as presiding officer he has the authority to delete the words as it besmirch the character or destroy a person.
“In this case, it is very clear the “walanghiya” word refers to the mayor because it stemmed from the resolution of Jimenez calling the mayor to comment on the acronym CELSO printed on the vehicles,” Iturralde pointed out.
“If my Tagalog serves me right, Robredo’s statements ”Napakawalanghiya Nila” means many and does not pinpoint to only one person,” replied Agan.
Councilor Mel Sadain said Agan was only quoting Robredo’s statements and was not alluding to anyone. “Does anyone in this session feel alluded to that statement?”
As this developed, Councilor Vincent Paul Elago said officials of the DILG are silent on this issue.
“If the mayor violated the DILG circular why is it, our DILG officials here are mum on this matter?” Elago asked.
He called on the councilors to bring the matter to court if they see they that the mayor is indeed violating the law.
But even if they debated lengthily on the issue the end result was still the same. Jimenez’ resolution was killed.
By Nonong Santiago
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