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Updated: 1 hour 46 min ago

Pimentel bares six potential PDP-Laban senatorial bets

Fri, 10/06/2017 - 16:37



By Audrey Morallo (philstar.com) | Updated October 6, 2017 - 3:25pm

MANILA, Philippines — Senate President Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III on Friday announced six potential senatorial candidates of the administration Partido Demokratiko Pilipino- Lakas ng Bayan for the 2019 midterm elections.

Pimentel, who is the president of PDP-Laban, said that half of the party's 12 candidates for the senatorial elections could include himself, House Majority Leader Rodolfo Fariñas (Ilocos Norte), presidential adviser Francis Tolentino, Rep. Karlo Nograles (Davao City), Rep. Geraldine Roman (Bataan) and Rep. Alfredo Abelardo Benitez (Negros Occidental).

Pimentel however was quick to emphasize that the list is not yet final and official as the matter is still "developing, evolving."

The senate president said that the administration party would try to field 12 candidates but is also open to entering coalitions with other parties to complete its slate.

"If we cannot come up with 12, then we are open to entering into coalition agreements with other parties. This is a 'developing/evolving' matter hence not final not official; just my personal preferences,” Pimentel said in a text message to reporters.

Before joining PDP-Laban, Roman, Benitez and Fariñas were members of the Liberal Party, the administration party from 2010 to 2016.

Tolentino, Aquino's Metropolitan Manila Development Authority chairman, was supposed to run under the LP slate in the 2016 elections but was dropped after being involved in a controversy involving a lascivious dance performance by an all-girl group.

The former MMDA chief has a pending poll protest against Sen. Leila De Lima, who placed 12th in last year's senate elections.

Tolentino, who got 1.3 million votes fewer than De Lima, asked the Senate Electoral Tribunal to remove the detained senator allegedly for committing fraud.

Roman is part of a political family in Bataan and is the first transgender to be elected to Congress.

Pimentel is expected to face a legal problem in his bid for reelection as the 1987 Constitution allows only two consecutive six-year terms for senators.

The senate president served a little less than two years of his first term as he was locked in an electoral protest against Juan Miguel Zubiri, whom he accused of fraud in the 2007 elections.

Zubiri denied cheating but resigned from the Senate before the Senate Electoral Tribunal could decide on the protest. Pimentel took his oath of office as senator in August 2011.

Pimentel ran for a second term in the 2013 eelctions and won. 

Source: Philippine Star

Koko reveals half of PDP-Laban’s possible ‘Magic 12’

Fri, 10/06/2017 - 16:23



By: Julliane Love De Jesus - Reporter / @JLDejesusINQINQUIRER.net / 01:27 PM October 06, 2017

Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III disclosed on Friday the partial list of senatorial bets that the ruling Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) would possibly consider for the upcoming 2019 senatorial election.

Pimentel, who is also the PDP-Laban president, said that half of the party’s “Magic 12” could include himself, House Majority Leader Rodolfo Fariñas, Negros Occidental Representative Alfredo Abelardo Benitez, Bataan Rep. Geraldine Roman, Davao City Rep. Karlo Nograles, and former Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) chairman Francis Tolentino.

However, Pimentel said in a text message that the list is still unofficial as it was “just my personal preferences” and that coming up with the 12 senatorial candidates is “a developing/evolving” matter, hence, not final.

Pimentel also said that he has yet to personally discuss the issue with the prospective candidates.

Before moving to PDP-Laban, Benitez, Roman and Tolentino were allies of the Liberal Party during the administration of former President Benigno Aquino III.   /kga

Source: Inquirer.net

Alvarez to Negrenses: Support PDP Laban candidates in 2019

Fri, 10/06/2017 - 16:09



By: Carla P. Gomez - Correspondent / @carlagomezINQInquirer Visayas / 05:28 PM October 05, 2017

VICTORIAS CITY, Negros Occidental—Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez on Thursday rallied their forces to support President Rodrigo Duterte amid what he called moves to derail the administration’s efforts to bring about change.



The PDP-Laban gathering at Victorias Coliseum drew hundreds of once supporters of Mar Roxas and now admirers of President Duterte. —CARLA P. GOMEZ

Alvarez also called on supporters to back the senatorial candidates of Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) in 2019, which would include Representatives Alfredo Abelardo Benitez of Negros Occidental and Geraldine Roman of Bataan to ensure that the ruling party would dominate the Upper Chamber.

Alvarez was here to lead the mass oath-taking of new PDP-Laban members in Negros Occidental, a province that used to be dominated by the once ruling Liberal Party and where LP standard bearer Mar Roxas won during the presidential elections.

At least 10,000 community leaders took their oath before Alvarez at the Victorias Coliseum in Victorias City about 10 a.m. on Thursday and at past noon, it was the turn of 4,000 leaders at the University of Negros Occidental–Recoletos in Bacolod.

They would be tapped to push the campaign for a federal form of government that will go full swing next year, said PDP Laban Negros Occidental secretary general Yves Akol.

Two local political groups – United Negros Alliance led by Gov. Alfredo Marañon and Love Negros led by Benitez, have already shifted to PDP-Laban.

During his speech at Victorias Coliseum, the Speaker said the Duterte administration has been under attack by those “who cannot accept defeat” and derail the President’s efforts to fulfill his promise to effect change in the country.

“We will not allow them to succeed. We will do everything to deliver the promises made by the President during his campaign,” said Alvarez.

“He (Mr. Duterte) promised genuine reforms, we will deliver them come hell or high waters,” he said, adding that they would not take sitting down these plots to oust the President.

Alvarez pointed out that 180 legislative measures had been passed at the House of Representatives but less than 10 had been acted upon by the Senate where there were opposition senators.

“In 2019 I am asking you, if you fully support the President, support the candidates of PDP-Laban for the Senate,” he said, with a 12-0 vote.

Among the senatorial candidates were Benitez, the third richest man in the House, Roman, the first transgender woman elected to Congress.

But Benitez said he had not fully decided whether to run for senator or not since he was still getting the pulse of the people by going around the country.

Roman, who ran under LP, said she shifted to PDP-Laban because of its advocacy to change the form of government into federalism to bring progress to the rest of the Philippines, instead of having a highly centralized government with all the progress and development concentrated in Metro Manila.

Roman also cited the party’s commitment to support the President’s fight versus drugs and crime in the country that must be addressed for the country to further grow. /jpv

Source: Inquirer.net

Ex-Poe backer, Ex-LP solon tagged as 2019 Duterte senate bets

Fri, 10/06/2017 - 15:54



By: Carla P. Gomez - Correspondent / @carlagomezINQPhilippine Daily Inquirer / 06:20 AM October 06, 2017

VICTORIAS CITY—Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez yesterday bragged that the now ruling Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) would control the Senate after the 2019 elections with candidates that he said would surely be elected because they adhere to the principles of President Duterte, among them Representatives Alfredo Benitez and Geraldine Roman.



The PDP-Laban gathering at Victorias Coliseum drew hundreds of once supporters of Mar Roxas and now admirers of President Duterte. —CARLA P. GOMEZ

Alvarez named Benitez and Roman at a rally here for the mass oath-taking of new members of PDP-Laban, a party that rose from near anonymity to being sought after.

The oath-taking of hundreds of politicians and officials in Negros Occidental marked a political transition being replicated nationwide. The province used to be dominated by Liberal Party (LP), which had been in power under former President Benigno Aquino III. LP candidate Mar Roxas won in the presidential elections in the province.

At least 10,000 community leaders took their oaths as new PDP-Laban members before Alvarez at the Victorias Coliseum here. At past noon, at least 4,000 other leaders took oaths at the University of Negros Occidental-Recoletos in Bacolod.

Federalism campaign

They would be tapped to push the campaign for a federal form of government that would be in full swing next year, said Yves Akol, PDP-Laban Negros Occidental secretary general.

Two local political groups—United Negros Alliance led by Gov. Alfredo Marañon and Love Negros led by Benitez—had already shifted loyalty to PDP-Laban. Benitez had supported the presidential candidacy of Sen. Grace Poe.

During his speech, Alvarez said the Duterte administration was under attack by those “who cannot accept defeat” and want to derail the President’s efforts to fulfill his promise to bring about change.

“We will not allow them to succeed. We will do everything to deliver the promises made by the President,” Alvarez said.

“We will deliver them come hell or high water,” the Speaker said.

Obstacle in Senate

Alvarez said the House had passed 180 measures but less than 10 had been acted upon by the Senate where there were opposition senators.

“In 2019, I am asking you, if you fully support the President, support the candidates of PDP-Laban for the Senate,” he said, with a 12-0 vote.

Among the senatorial candidates were Benitez, the third richest man in the House, and Roman, the first transgender woman elected to Congress.

But Benitez said he had not fully decided whether to run for senator or not since he was still getting the pulse of the people by going around the country.

Roman, who ran as an LP candidate, said she shifted to PDP-Laban because of its advocacy to change the form of government into federal.

Roman also cited the party’s commitment to support the President’s fight against drugs and criminality.

Source: Inquirer.net

Back Duterte,PDP Laban 2019 senate bets: Alvarez

Fri, 10/06/2017 - 15:48



Thursday, October 5, 2017
BY CARLA GOMNEZ & CHRYSEE SAMILLANO

House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, who led the mass oathtaking of about 13,000 new Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan members in Negros Occidental yesterday, rallied their forces to support President Rodrigo Duterte amid what he called moves to derail the administration's efforts to bring about change.

He also called on the new PDP Laban members to back the senatorial candidates of PDP-Laban in 2019, who would include representatives Alfredo Abelardo Benitez (Neg. Occ., 3 rd District) and Geraldine Roman (Bataan, 1 st District) to ensure the ruling party will dominate the Upper Chamber.

“In 2019 I am asking you, if you fully support the President, support the candidates of PDP-Laban for the Senate,” he said, with a 12-0 vote.

He said the Lower House had passed 180 legislative measures with only less than 10 acted in the Senate, so far.

The Speaker led the massoathtaking of more than 10,000 new PDP Laban members at the Victorias Coliseum in Victorias City organized by Benitez at about 10 a.m. and close to 3,000 organized by Bacolod Mayor EvelioLeonardia at the University of Negros Occidental – Recoletos in Bacolod City at past noon yesterday.

“Thank you for your show of support for the president by joining his party, PDP Laban,” Alvarez said.

“The Duterte administration is continuously under attack by those who cannot accept defeat,” he said.

The president promised change for the country but they are doing everything to prevent him from fulfilling that, he said.

“We will not allow them to succeed, we will do everything to deliver the promises made by the president during his campaign,” he said.

“He promised genuine reforms, we will deliver them come hell or high waters”, Alvarez said.

Change will happen, because the president will deliver, Alvarez said, with the support of the people.

Alvarez said those who are planning moves to oust the president should not eventry it, because they will not take it sitting down.

Alvarez was accompanied by Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi - PDP Laban national vice chairman, and Deputy Internal Revenue Commissioner Clint Aranas – PDP Laban national treasurer.

DRUGS

Before he administered the oath of officeto the new members in Bacolod City, Alvarez asked the crowd dominated by barangay officials if there was anyone engaged in illegal drugs.

He said the President does not want anyone involved in drugs to be a member of the PDP Laban. If ever they are, they should join the Liberal Party instead, he added.

BENITEZ

Benitez said he is now going around the country to see if the people will accept his plan to run for senator, which will be the basis for his decision. There has to be acceptance, he said.

Negros Occidental officials led by Gov. Alfredo Marañon Jr. and Bacolod officials, led by Leonardia, have expressed support for the Senate bid of Benitez.

Leonardia declared during the oathtaking in Bacolod that their party, the GrupoProgreso, is endorsing the bid of Benitez for the Senate.

ROMAN

Roman, the first transgender woman elected to Congress, said she belonged to another political party, but when the president won she decided it was time to leave politics behind and get down to work.

She noted that the number one agenda of the PDP Laban is the shift toward a federal form of government to bring progress to the rest of the Philippines, instead of having a highly centralized government with all the progress and development concentrated in Metro Manila.

Roman also cited the party's commitment to support the president's fight versus drugs and crime in the country that must be addressed for the country to further grow.

The congresswoman also noted the commitment of the PDP-Laban to help the poor and for equality among all.

The new PDP Laban members will be tapped to push the campaign for a federal form of government that will go full swing next year, PDP Laban Negros Island secretary general Yves Akol said.

IN VICTORIAS

Representatives present at the PDP-Laban oathtaking rites in Victorias,aside from Benitez, were GregGasataya (Bacolod) and Stephen Paduano (AbangLingkodPartylist).

The 15 mayors who also attended the mass oathtaking rites in Victorias were Lourdes Escalante – Manapla, Richard Jaococo – Toboso, MagdalenoPeña – Moises Padilla, JilsonTubillara – San Enrique, Patrick Escalante - Cadiz City, Enrique Miravalles – Valladolid, Andrew Montelibano - Murcia, RhumylaNicor-Mangilimutan – La Castellana,Eddie Montero - Escalante, Francis Palanca – Victorias City, Mark Golez – Silay City, JoselitoMalabor – Isabela, Marvin Malacon – EB Magalona, Neil Lizares – Talisay, and NadieArceo – Hinigaran. IN BACOLOD

Bacolod officials present at the oathtaking rites at UNO-R were Leonardia, Gasataya, Vice Mayor El Cid Familiaran, councilors EmAng, Caesar Distrito, RenecitoNovero, Noli Villarosa, and Bartolome Orola, and City Administrator John Orola.*CPG/CGS

Source: The Visayan Daily Star

Alvarez Endorses Benitez for Senate

Fri, 10/06/2017 - 15:37



By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
October 6, 2017

PDP-Laban secretary-general, House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, formally endorsed Negros Occidental third district Rep. Alfredo Benitez, along with Bataan first district Rep. Geraldine Roman, for senatorial runs in 2019.

“If you support President Rodrigo Duterte, this coming 2019 election, you should support the PDP-Laban, including Senator Benitez,” the speaker declared during his address at the University of Negros Occidental-Recoletos (UNO-R). “Give us 12-0 in the Senate.”

In response, Benitez said he is still formulating a platform before announcing a run.

“There should be an advocacy that is acceptable to the people,” he explained. “Not that we will just run for the sake of running.”

The speaker also threw some barbs at the Senate, calling them “the slow house.”

“We have forwarded 110 bills to the Senate as of the beginning of Congress,” said Alvarez. “Those approved by the Senate have not even reached ten.”

He credited the sluggish process as his reasoning behind endorsing Benitez and Roman.

“Since it’s your last term anyway, you can transfer to the Senate in order to get things going there,” the speaker claimed.

Meanwhile, Bacolod City Mayor Evelio Leonardia said his local political coalition, Grupo Progreso, will go “all out” for Benitez.

Last month, Benitez said he does not intend to pursue the governorship as he would prefer not to run against Love Negros partymate, incumbent Vice Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson, who previously expressed an interest in the position./WDJ

Source: Watchmen Daily Journal

House Speaker, actor endorse Benitez for senator

Fri, 10/06/2017 - 15:05




Friday, October 06, 2017
Teresa D. Ellera and Carla N. Cañet



BACOLOD. House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez leads the oath-taking of members of PDP-Laban in Victorias City Thursday, with (on stage) Deputy Commissioner Clint Aranas, Moises Padilla Mayor Magdaleno Peña, Negros Occidental Third District Rep. Alfredo Benitez, Bataan First District Rep. Geraldine Roman, actor Gabby Concepcion, Silay City Mayor Mark Golez, and Talisay City Mayor Neil Lizares. Contributed Photo

HOUSE Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez officially endorsed Third District Representative Alfredo Benitez for senator before about 10,000 Negrenses who joined the mass-oath taking of the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) at the Victorias City Coliseum yesterday.

“If you support President Rodrigo Duterte, this coming 2019 elections, you should support PDP-Laban, including Senator Benitez, and give us 12-0 in the Senate,” Alvarez, party secretary-general, said in his speech.

He said that it’s already definite that Benitez will be included in the senatorial line-up of PDP-Laban for 2019, and in fact, he has been going around the country.

Benitez said he has been going around telling people about his advocacies and that when there is already acceptance by the people, that would be the time he will decide to run for senator.

“I’m already in the shortlist of the senatorial line-up of PDP Laban. I need acceptance, not that we will just run for the sake of running. There should be an advocacy that is acceptable to the people,” Benitez said.

Actor Gabby Concepcion, Benitez’s friend, who also attended the mass oath-taking rites, endorsed the Negrense lawmaker for senator as well, saying he is his “best man” for the Senate.

Concepcion said he has been supporting Benitez since he first ran for congressman in 2010.

“I am just in the background. I have known Albee since high school. He is kind and quiet type of person. I never expected that he will enter politics. Politics is embedded in his genes, and he has helped a lot of people,” he added.

Yesterday’s mass-oath taking was attended by 15 mayors in the province.

The 15 mayors who took their oath were Frederick Palanca of Victorias City, Marvin Malacon of E. B. Magalona, Mark Andrew Golez of Silay City, Neil Lizares of Talisay City, Andrew Montelibano of Murcia, Lourdes Escalante of Manapla, Patrick Escalante of Cadiz City, Richard Jaojoco of Toboso, Magdaleno Peña of Moises Padilla, Jilson Tubillara of San Enrique, Joselito Malabor of Isabela, Enrique Miravalles of Valladolid, Eddie Montero of Escalante City, Rhumyla Mangilimutan of La Castellana, and Jose Nadie Arceo of Hinigaran.

Governor Alfredo Marañon III, who was traveling abroad was represented by Second District Board Member Salvador Escalante, who handed the resolution of United Negros Alliance to House Speaker Alvarez for the proposed coalition between local ruling party Unega and PDP-Laban.

Bacolod City Lone District Rep. Greg Gasataya and Councilor Ricardo Tan as well as Abang Lingkod partylist Rep. Stephen Paduano were also present.

Alvarez was joined by Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi, Bureau of Internal Revenue Deputy Commissioner Clint Aranas, and Bataan First District Rep. Geraldine Roman, also one of PDP-Laban senatorial candidates.

Meanwhile, Paduano said 37 of the 61 village chiefs of Bacolod City joined him at the orientation and oath-taking rites in Victorias.

A total of 538 leaders from Bacolod accepted his invitation, including more than 200 kagawad, he added.

Support for Benitez

Also in Bacolod, Grupo Progreso led by Mayor Evelio Leonardia declared their support for Benitez’s senatorial bid.

“The Grupo Progreso officially declares its support for Congressman Benitez for senator in 2019,” said Leonardia, who announced their support during the separate oath-taking ceremony of more than 2,000 members at the University of Negros Occidental-Recoletos Gymnasium.

Councilor Em Ang and former Councilors Roberto Rojas and Al Victor Espino also took their oath before Alvarez.

Source: Sunstar Bacolod

Alvarez tells Negros: Vote 12-0 for Senate

Fri, 10/06/2017 - 14:42




Friday, October 06, 2017
Marchel P. Espina

HOUSE Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez asked the new members of the ruling Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) to vote straight for the senatorial candidates of the administration party in 2019.

Alvarez, who administered the oath of about 12,000 Negrense members on Thursday in the cities of Bacolod and Victorias, sought the support of party members for the next senatorial elections.

Speaking before the crowd at the University Negros Occidental-Recoletos gymnasium in Bacolod, Alvarez said: “Ngayon pa lang, nakikiusap ako sa inyo, dahil miyembro na kayo ng PDP. Pwede ba sa dadating na halalan, sa 2019, pweda ba 12-0 ha? (Right now, I’m asking you because you’re now members of PDP. In the upcoming elections in 2019, can we make it 12-0?)”

It drew cheers from the crowd.

He continued: “Kung sino ang line-up ng ating partido, 'yun lang ika-kampanya natin. 'Yun lang sasabihin natin sa ating supporters, eto bobotohin para mabilis magagawa ng pangulo ang pagbabago na gawin para sa ating bayan (Whoever is the line-up of our party, we will campaign for them. We will tell our supporters to vote for them so the President could hastily implement change for our country.”

In a chance interview, Alvarez said that the gathering of forces is “in preparation” for the 2019 elections as it includes senatorial candidates.

‘Mabagal na kapulungan’

Alvarez called the Senate “mabagal na kapulungan,” because they are slow in acting on the bills while those in the House of Representatives, the “masaganang kapulungan,” are hardworking.

He added there are about 180 bills that are pending at the Senate.

“Kaya kinausap ko ang ibang congressmen na lumipat doon sa senado para bumilis sila, (That’s why I talked to some congressmen to transfer in the senate so they will be faster),” Alvarez said.

He said the ruling party is pushing for the senatorial bids of Negros Occidental Third District Representative Alfredo Benitez, the third richest congressman in the country; and Bataan First District Representative Geraldine Roman, the first transgender woman elected to the Congress.

Liberal Party scored

Alvarez said the PDP-Laban won’t recruit members who have ties with illegal drugs.

Addressing the crowd, the House Speaker asked: “Sino sa inyo ang kasama sa droga? Taas kamay! Wala?” (Who’s here into drugs? Raise your hands! No one?)”

He added: “The President doesn’t want you to join PDP if you’re into drugs. Kapag kasama ka sa droga, doon kayo sa Liberal Party (If you’re into drugs, join Liberal Party).”

Alvarez said the previous administration didn’t do anything to stop the proliferation of illegal drugs.

“Kasi sila nag palaganap ng droga. Wala silang ginawa noong administrasyon nila. Dumami ang droga sa Pilipinas (They helped with the proliferation of drugs. They didn’t do anything during their administration. The drugs proliferated in the Philippines),” he added.

Moreover, Alvarez, during his speech, assailed LP for its “attacks” and “sabotage” of the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte.

“Ayaw nila ng pagbabago na ipapatupad ng ating pangulo. Kaya gagawin nila lahat para sirain si Presidente Duterte (They don’t want President Duterte to implement change. They will do everything to destroy President Duterte,” he said.

The lawmaker said they won’t let it happen, which drew cheers from the crowd.

“I guarantee you that all the promises made by President Duterte in the last elections will be realized in the remaining years of his term. No matter what will happen, we will do everything to fulfil the commitment of our President,” Alvarez said.

He said that Duterte promised to fight illegal drugs, criminality and poverty, which they are doing right now.

Source: Sunstar Bacolod

UNEGA Resolution for Coalition with PDP-Laban Passed

Fri, 10/06/2017 - 08:35



on Fri, 10/06/2017 by Jun delos Reyes

The Secretary General of the United Negros Alliance (UNEGA) Party, Board Member Salvador Escalante, Jr., handed a Resolution to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and Partido Demokratiko Pilipino–Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) Secretary General, Pantaleon Alvarez, for the Proposed Coalition by and between the UNEGA and (PDP-Laban) for the purpose of pursuing common goals for the benefit of all the constituents of the Province of Negros Occidental.



Congressman Alfredo “Albee” Benitez, 3rd District Negros Occidental delivers his message and presented the more than 10,000 community leaders of the towns and cities of Negros Occidental to Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez of the House of Congress in support to PDB LABAN at the Basic Membership Seminar, Federalism Forum and Oathtaking Ceremony at the jampacked crowd at Victorias Coliseum, Victorias City, yesterday.*(Jun de los Reyes/NDB photo)

This was during the PDP-Laban Basic Membership Seminar and Oath Taking Ceremony held in Victorias City, yesterday, attended by thousands of officials from the different towns and cities of the province.



HOUSE SPEAKER Pantaleon “Bebot” Alvarez, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Congressman, 1st District of Davao Del Norte, PDP LABAN National Secretary General administers the mass oathtaking of more than 10,000 city, municipal, barangay officials, kagawads and community leaders at the Basic Membership Seminar, Federalism Forum and Oathtaking Ceremony at Victorias Coliseum, Victorias City, yesterday, October 5.*(Jun de los Reyes/NDB photo)

It is stated in the Resolution that UNEGA has been recognized by the Commission on Elections as the dominant local party for Negros Occidental. It shares and wholeheartedly supports the vision and ideology of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte for a peaceful and democratic way of life characterized by freedom, solidarity, justice, equity, and social responsibility, self-reliance and efficiency, enlightened nationalism, and a shift to a federal system of parliamentary government.*

 

Source: Negros Daily Bulletin

House passes resolution giving NHA power to award unoccupied houses

Fri, 10/06/2017 - 06:49




Published October 5, 2017, 10:00 PM
By Ben Rosario

The House of Representatives has unanimously adopted a joint resolution that would grant the National Housing Authority (NHA) the power to award other qualified beneficiaries the thousands of unoccupied and unassigned housing units previously reserved for uniformed personnel of the government.

Voting 212 for and zero against, the Lower Chamber approved House Joint Resolution (HJR) No. 15 authored by Negros Occidental Rep. Alfredo “Albee” Benitez and several other members of the House Committee on Housing and Urban Development that he chairs.

Benitez pushed for the approval of the measure to address the housing controversy that came to fore when hundreds of homeless members of the Kadamay urban poor organization forced their way into NHA housing projects in San Jose del Monte and Pandi in Bulacan. The members of the organization occupied units meant for members of the police and military services.

President Duterte has also backed the re-awarding of government constructed housing units if the original awardees are no longer interested.

“Instead of leaving the finished units to deteriorate and go to waste, it has become imperative for government to let other homeless families benefit from its low cost housing program.” Benitez explained.

Under HJR 15, unawarded housing units in the Armed Forces of the Philippines/Philippine National Police/Bureau of Fire Protection/Bureau of Jail Management and Penology/Bureau of Corrections housing projects may now be allocated to other qualified beneficiaries if the said houses are not yet occupied.

Transfer of award may cover shelters whose ownership and possession are surrendered by awardees. Also, units whose respective awards have been canceled due to default in the payment of amortization and violation of the terms and conditions of the loan agreement may also be awarded to new applicants.

Benitez disclosed that government has allocated P22.779 billion to implement the housing program for uniformed personnel. The budget called for the construction of 74,195 housing units as of March 31, 2017.

Benitez said the Commission on Audit has reported that as of 2016, 62,472 units have already been completed but only 7,143 were occupied. The remainder, 55,329, remained unoccupied as of December, 2016.

“The low occupancy rate of the completed housing units by their intended beneficiaries is a clear indication of a failed program in the face of the magnitude of the need for housing,” the senior administration solon lamented.

Benitez added: “The reported occupancy rate of the completed housing units for the program is at a mere 8.09 percent.”

He warned that the glut in vacant houses threaten government’s bid to recover expenses that can be used for other social projects. He added that this will also result in the fast deterioration of the units, expose them to risk of being occupied by unqualified or unintended beneficiaries and deprive beneficiaries of the timely use and benefits of the housing projects.

Aside from Benitez, other authors of HJR 15 are Reps. Jose Christopher Belmonte (LP, Quezon City); Ron Salo (Kabayan Party-list); Rozzano Rufino Biazon (LP, Muntinlupa City); Winston Castelo (PDP-Laban, Quezon City); Raneo Abu (PDP-Laban, Batangas); Aurelio “Dong” Gonzales (LP, Pampanga) and Aileen Radaza (PDP-Laban, Cebu).

Source: Manila Bulletin

No Albee clash, Bong confirms

Thu, 10/05/2017 - 08:29



Thursday, October 5, 2017
By Gilber Bayoran

Whatever his decision, there will be no clash.

This was also the response yesterday of Negros Occidental Vice-Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson to the statement of Rep. Alfredo Benitez, who is being pushed by the mayors of the 3rd district of Negros Occidental, to run for governor in the 2019 elections.

Lacson, who already signified his intention to run for governor of Negros Occidental in the next local election, reiterated that he will remain with the Nationalist People's Coalition, despite the invitation for them to join the PDP-Laban of President Rodrigo Duterte.

Benitez was quoted as saying earlier that he will not run against Lacson in the gubernatorial race. But Lacson said he was not aware of that, although he had talks with Rep. Benitez before.

Lacson said this information has not been relayed to him. but added “I hope the fake news does not come from the media”.

Benitez, who is now on his last term as congressman of the 3rd district of Negros Occidental, was already reported to have been included in the PDP-LABAN senatorial line up in the 2019 elections. But the solon said he has yet to decide on it.

About 11,500 political leaders in Negros Occidental, including those in Bacolod City, are expected to simultaneously take their oaths as PDP-Laban members in the cities of Victorias and Bacolod today.

Last year, more than 200 political leaders in Negros Occidental led by Governor Alfredo Marañon Jr. also took their oaths as PDP-Laban members.

Earlier Marañon had said that he will support whatever decision Benitez makes.

Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez and Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi are expected at the oathtaking rites.

“Tomorrow (today) is a very big day for PDP-Laban. I am sure they will have the numbers in attendance both in Victorias and Bacolod cities. So I wish them well”, Lacson said.

PDP-Laban has an alliance with the NPC.* GPB

Source: The Visayan Daily Star

11,500 joining PDP-Laban to boost federalism push

Wed, 10/04/2017 - 19:31



Wednesday, October 4, 2017
By Carla Gomez

About 11,500 political leaders in Negros Occidental will simultaneously take their oaths as members of the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino–Lakasng Bayan in Victorias and Bacolod cities tomorrow morning, Yves Akol, PDP Laban Negros Island secretary general, said yesterday.

The mass oathtaking is part of the push towards a federal form of government, he said.

PDP Laban national officials at the oathtaking will be led by party secretary general, House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, and treasurer, Internal Revenue Deputy Commissioner Clint Aranas, Akol said.

Chairman of the party is President Rodrigo Duterte, while its president is Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III.

Akol said 9,000 will take their oaths at rites at the Victorias Coliseum in Victorias City organized by Rep. Alfredo Abelardo Benitez (Neg. Occ., 3 rd District).

In Bacolod City 2,500 will take their oaths at the University of Negros Occidental-Recoletos organized by Mayor EvelioLeonardia, Akoladded.

Those who will take their oaths do not include barangay captains, he also said.

He said no additional Negros Occidental mayors will be taking their oaths tomorrow, since the PDP-Laban already has an alliance with the Nationalist People's Coalition.

Among the Negros Occidental officials who have opted to remain with the NPC, headed by Ambassador Eduardo Cojuangco are Vice Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson, Rep. Melecio Yap (1st District), Rep. Mercedes Alvarez (6th District), Rep. Greg Gasataya (Bacolod), and about 10 mayors.

The main objective of the PDP Laban expansion is to gather forces to push the campaign for federalism awareness, Akol said.

The objective is for the move towards federalism to be acted on by Congress next year, and for it to be in place before the president's term ends, he added.

He said they are also hoping for theretention of the Negros Island as part of one federal state with the shift towards federalism.*CPG

Source: The Visayan Daily Star

Panukalang Batas ni Cong. Albee Benitez Pasado na sa Appro

Tue, 10/03/2017 - 19:48


October 3, 2017


KONTI NA LANG!


Panukalang batas na magtatatag ng Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development, na itinataguyod ni Cong. Albee Benitez bilang tagapangulo ng Committee on Housing and Urban Development, pasado na sa Committee on Appropriations.

Itataguyod ng Department on Human Settlements ang mas komprehensibong programa ng pabahay para sa mga maralitang tagalungsod. Pangagasiwaan nito ang paglinang sa mga lupa ng gobyerno para sa makamasang pabahay at titiyakin ang maayos na urbanisasyon.

CCTVs for public places, establishments urged by solon

Tue, 10/03/2017 - 07:27




Updated October 2, 2017, 12:19 PM
By Charissa Luci-Atienza

A House leader proposes to require business establishments to install closed circuit television (CCTV) or video surveillance system to deter crimes and to protect lives and properties.

Negros Occidental Rep. Alfredo “Albee” Benitez filed House Bill (H.B.) 6381 calling for the installation of the CCTV cameras or video surveillance system in business establishments, public offices and facilities, public and private schools, parks, public markets, and major roads and intersections.

“The ever- changing methods of criminals in perpetrating crimes and avoiding capture requires and complex us to likewise change and adjust our efforts by making use of all resources and technological innovations available at our disposal,” he said.

He said that emergence of CCTV is seen as one of those technological developments that will deter crimes and solve unresolved and pending offenses.

“The puzzle on the death of Kian Loyd delos Santos, who was allegedly killed without basis during an anti-drug operations shows how CCTV cameras can help determine the truth and identify the perpetrators and bring them to the Courts of Law and face the consequences of their actions,” Benitez said.

H.B. 6381 mandates business establishments and public areas to turn on their CCTV/ surveillance cameras for recording for 24 hours every day.

The video recording shall be kept on safe keeping for 90 days from the date of recording and may be disposed of after the lapse of the period.

For business establishments, the installation of the CCTV cameras/video surveillance shall be a mandatory requirement prior to the issuance of business permits.

Source: Manila Bulletin

Benitez: No clash with Lacson in 2019

Mon, 10/02/2017 - 18:17




Monday, October 02, 2017
Marchel P. Espina

LOOKS like there won’t be a clash between Negros Occidental Vice Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson and Third District Representative Alfredo Benitez in the gubernational post in the 2019 elections.

The lawmaker said Sunday that “we will not run against each other.”

Benitez, who is on his third and final term, was included in the senatorial slate of the administration party in the next elections.

However, he said that he has yet to make a decision about his political plans.

“No decision yet,” he added.

Both Benitez and Lacson have been tight-lipped on the talks about their possible clash in the top provincial post in 2019.

Both are leaders of Love Negros, rival political party of United Negros Alliance (Unega) headed by Governor Alfredo Marañon Jr., who is on his third and final term.

Benitez had earlier said he could run for governor, senator, or rest from politics in the next elections while Marañon had been urging the lawmaker to run for senator in the next elections.

Lacson, on the other hand, has yet to reveal his political plans.

He had earlier said that running for governor in 2019 is an option considering that Marañon is now on his last term.

Unega and Love Negros used to be allies before their break up in 2013, when Marañon decided to seek a second term against Nationalist People’s Coalition bet former vice governor Genaro Alvarez, who was supported by Benitez.

Benitez and Alvarez then formed Love Negros as the opposition party.

Source: Sunstar Bacolod

Decongesting Metro Manila

Sun, 10/01/2017 - 16:50




By Jovee Marie de la Cruz - October 1, 2017

Offices of national government agencies may soon inch their way out of Metro Manila to outlying regions, as a proposal for their relocation gains traction in the House of Representatives.

House Committee on Housing and Urban Development Chairman Alfredo Benitez of Negros Occidental said his panel has recently approved a substitute bill moving national government administrative offices from the National Capital Region (NCR) to the provinces.

Benitez said the proposal seeks to decongest Metro Manila and ensure the functions of government during calamities, while allowing a better government transaction system.

“Overpopulation, traffic congestion and high vulnerability to natural disasters have made Metro Manila, or the NCR, a pariah among world cities,” Benitez said.

The measure, he added, will now be submitted to the mother committee for final approval. After the approval on the panel level, the bill will be transmitted to the plenary for deliberations.

The lawmaker said there is a need to rethink and develop a master plan that will decongest Metro Manila.

Progress after relocation 

According to Benitez, several countries where government agencies were relocated outside the main city have flourished, such as South Korea, Malaysia and Brazil.

“Relocation of capitals had already been done by several countries. Malaysia, for instance, built a new administrative capital to ease congestion in Kuala Lumpur. Putrajaya is envisioned to be a ‘green’ and ‘intelligent’ city,’ with wide parks and open spaces, and strong ICT [information communication technology] infrastructure. Its aesthetic design also shows distinct Islamic character to reflect Malaysian identity and heritage as a predominantly Muslim country,” he said.

Alternative plan 

National Economic and Development Authority Secretary Ernesto Pernia, in a position paper, suggested that a “well-coordinated master plan on how to decongest NCR and support the development of regional and subregional centers [must] be prepared instead.”

“This can be done through existing institutions, particularly the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority, which is mandated by law to formulate and coordinate implementation of medium- and long-term plans and programs for the land use and physical development within NCR,” Pernia said.

While recognizing the intention of the proposal, Pernia said under the 2017-2022 Philippine Development Plan (PDP), the NCR is envisioned to remain as the seat of the national government.

“The strategy for decongesting NCR is to direct growth to regional and subregional centers, which have the economies of scale and agglomeration needed to become attractive investment hosts and alternatives to NCR,” he said.

“The PDP also provides the basis for identifying strategic infrastructure projects that will ensure connectivity among urban centers and rural production areas. It encourages local government units to incorporate disaster-risk reduction in their comprehensive land-use plans, given that it is at the local level where hazards could be defined in detail, including the specific interventions to reduce vulnerability to disasters,” Pernia added.

Under the bill, the Administrative Capital City Planning Commission shall be created to lead the development of a comprehensive plan to relocate the government agencies and establish an administrative capital city outside Metro Manila.

Also, the Administrative Capital City Planning Commission shall conduct a feasibility study of relocating most of the administrative offices of government agencies outside of Metro Manila. The commission will be placed under the Office of the President.

“The authority shall call upon any department, bureau, office, agency, or instrumentality of the government, including government-owned or -controlled corporations, government financial institutions, local government units, and request non-governmental organizations, the private sector and other entities for assistance as the circumstances and exigencies may require in carrying out his mandate,” the bill said.

It added the commission shall also submit to the President the mechanisms and oversee the initial phase of the transfer of the government agencies.

The measure said the commission shall identify the most suitable site for the administrative city and provide a master plan for the development of the site.

The bill also allows the commission to engage the assistance of local and foreign consultants and experts in the development of the master plan.

According to the measure, the master plan for the establishment of an administrative city shall guide and accomplish a coordinated, adjusted, harmonious development of the capital of the Philippines, which will, in accordance with the present and future needs, best promote health, safety, morals, order, convenience and prosperity.

The measure said that the amount necessary to implement this proposal shall be included in the budget of the Office of the President in the annual General Appropriations Act.

ISFs

Another major concern, Benitez said, is the increasing number of squatters, informal settler families (ISFs), in Metro Manila, eating up valuable urban space.

Benitez stressed that medium-rise buildings could be constructed in the areas that will be vacated by these government agencies.

The lawmaker said the off-city government programs for the ISFs failed because many of the relocatees have returned to the NCR, as their relocation sites are far from their source of income.

“Out of the 1.5 million ISFs in the country, nearly 600,000 are found in NCR,” he said.

The Philippine Statistics Authority said Metro Manila is home to 11.9 million people in 2010, making it one of the world’s most densely populated areas.

Meanwhile, Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC) Assistant Secretary Avelino Tolentino III suggested that to make housing projects more affordable, government lands should be converted into housing sites.

Avelino said this could be cheaper in the long run for the government, which will still own the lands, as relocation sites entail spending money to relocate to far-flung areas the ISFs, who, however, end up returning to the NCR due to the unavailability of basic services in the new housing sites.

By allowing the free use of government lands, Avelino said, tenants will only pay a small amount for the investment the government will spend in constructing the building and for its maintenance.

Clark City

During the technical working group phase, AlloyMTD Philippines President engineer Isaac S. David presented before lawmakers their plan to build Clark Green City as the new administrative center for the national government.

Like other cities, David said the $2.5-billion project is large enough to accommodate business, government, education, housing and lifestyle amenities.

He said the Clark Green City will be well-connected through public transport like rail and expressway.

The Clark Green City is patterned after Putrajaya. Putrajaya is the administrative capital of Malaysia, where there are executive, legislative and judicial offices.

Benitez admitted that it would take a longer time to implement this project, but “what’s important here is, we are now starting the process.”

“One of our dilemmas is most of our programs are [only] at short term because we were only looking at a six-year time frame for any administration. [With this], we cannot plan more than six years, but in this case, this requires more planning and implementation period,” he added.

The Clark Green City is envisioned as a disaster-resilient metropolis that could face the strongest typhoons and earthquakes.

“[We have to be resilient since] during Supertyphoon Yolanda, there was a time when there was no government. [This] will assure that we will not be immobilized during calamities because [of the absence of the government],” he said.

Benitez said Metro Manila also sits above a fault line that could trigger massive and destructive earthquakes.

The Clark Green City project is now being evaluated by the Bases Conversion and Development Authority.

 

Source: Business Mirror

House approves redistribution of unoccupied gov’t housing units

Thu, 09/28/2017 - 17:09




Published September 28, 2017, 12:04 AM
By Ben R. Rosario

Acting on the low occupancy rate of housing units originally intended for uniformed personnel, the House of Representatives unanimously backed a joint resolution authorizing the National Housing Authority (NHA) to redistribute the thousands of completed houses in government developed communities.

Voting through viva voce, the legislative chamber passed House Joint Resolution 11 authorizing the NHA to award unoccupied and unassigned housing units to other qualified beneficiaries.

Negros Occidental Rep. Alfredo Benitez, chairman of the House Committee on Housing and Urban Development, sponsored the legislative measure that was endorsed for swift approval by the House panel in response to the alleged “house grabbing incident” that the Kadamay urban poor group staged a few months back in Pandi and San Jose del Monte, Bulacan.

Benitez said that under the proposal, houses to be redistricted are those already awarded or still to be assigned housing units intended for members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Philippine National Police, Bureau of Fire Protection, Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, and Bureau of Corrections.

Benitez said the measure seeks to distribute un-awarded housing units that are not yet occupied and whose ownership and possession is surrendered by their respective awardees.

The lawmaker said housing units whose respective awards were cancelled by reason of default in the payment of amortization or for any violation of the terms and conditions of the individual loan agreement were also included.

He explained that the non-use by the intended beneficiaries of the housing units resulted in loss of revenues on the part of the government, unnecessary exposure of the units to unfavorable weather condition and non-attainment of the objectives of the program.

“The low occupancy rate of the completed housing units will result in the loss of opportunity for the government to recover costs that can be spent for other social projects, fast deterioration of the units, exposure of the units to the risk of being occupied by families/persons other than the intended beneficiaries and deprivation of the intended beneficiaries of the timely use and benefits of the housing projects,” he said.

Also, he said the low occupancy rate of the completed housing units by their intended beneficiaries is a clear indication of a “failed program in the face of the need for government to provide housing to a larger portion of its populace, an undeniably undesirable situation that needs remedial legislation.”

 Under the resolution, the NHA may instead identify alternative beneficiaries and beneficiary-specific sites such as in the case of public school teachers living within the area, employees in the local government concerned where the housing units are constructed, barangay employees and functionaries and informal settlers who could all benefit from the unoccupied housing units.

Some of the units of this housing program in Pandi and San Jose del Monte, Bulacan has already been occupied by group Kadamay.

The Administrative Order 9, Series of 2011, directed the NHA to implement the AFP and PNP housing program, providing permanent housing sites for qualified low-salaried members of the Armed Forces and the police force. The project was expanded to include employees of BFP, BJMP, and BuCor in 2012.

However, Benitez said years after the implementation, several housing units constructed under AFP/PNP housing project are still unoccupied as verified by the Commission on Audit.

“The reported occupancy rate of the completed housing units for the program is at a mere 8.09 percent,” he disclosed.

Source: Manila Bulletin

House proposal to ‘redistribute’ government housing units approved on 2nd reading

Thu, 09/28/2017 - 17:00




By Jovee Marie de la Cruz - September 27, 2017

The House of Representatives has approved on second reading a joint resolution authorizing the redistribution of thousands of housing units intended for the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Philippine National Police (PNP), Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP), Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) and Bureau of Corrections (BuCor).

Through viva voce voting, the lawmakers passed on Tuesday House Joint Resolution 11 authorizing the National Housing Authority (NHA) to award the unoccupied and unawarded government housing units to other qualified beneficiaries.

House Committee on Housing and Urban Development Rep. Alfredo Benitez of Negros Occidental, sponsor of the resolution, said the measure seeks to award the unawarded housing that are not yet occupied and whose ownership and possession is surrendered by their respective awardees.

The lawmaker said housing units whose respective awards were canceled by reason of default in the payment of amortization or for any violation of the terms and conditions of the individual loan agreement were also included.

Benitez said the nonuse by the intended beneficiaries of the housing units resulted to loss of revenues on the part of the government, unnecessary exposure of the units to unfavorable weather condition and nonattainment of the objectives of the program.

“The low occupancy rate of the completed housing units will result in the loss of opportunity for the government to recover costs that can be spent for other social projects, fast deterioration of the units, exposure of the units to the risk of being occupied by families/persons other than the intended beneficiaries and deprivation of the intended beneficiaries of the timely use and benefits of the housing projects,” he said.

Benitez also said the low occupancy rate of the completed housing units by their intended beneficiaries is a clear indication of a “failed program in the face of the need for government to provide housing to a larger portion of its populace, an undeniably undesirable situation that needs remedial legislation”.

Under the resolution, the NHA may, instead, identify alternative beneficiaries and beneficiary-specific sites, such as in the case of public-school teachers living within the area, employees in the local government concerned where the housing units are constructed, barangay employees and functionaries and informal settlers who could all benefit from the unoccupied housing units.

Some of the units of this housing program in Pandi and San Jose del Monte, Bulacan had already been occupied by the group Kadamay.

Source: Business Mirror

Leni backs plans vs ‘Yolanda’ housing contractor

Wed, 09/27/2017 - 22:28



By: Vince F. Nonato - Reporter / @VinceNonatoINQPhilippine Daily Inquirer / 06:02 PM September 27, 2017

Vice President Leni Robredo has thrown her support to moves that will bring to court the alleged erring contractor of an Eastern Samar housing project for the victims of typhoon Yolanda.

“For me, it’s the right thing to do,” Robredo said in an interview with reporters in Pili, Camarines Sur, a transcript of which was furnished by her office.

According to Robredo, she had repeatedly raised the problems in the government’s housing program during her short-lived stint as secretary of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC).

“There are many flaws in the policy,” she said, including the centralization of housing contracts with the National Housing Authority (NHA).

Robredo explained that the centralization of the NHA housing contracts leads to a situation where those that only qualify were triple-A contractors, which eventually sub-contract projects due to piled up contracts.

She noted that continued sub-contracting of the same project often sacrifices the quality of houses or structures.

“The sad part is, we have discovered (that) some sub-contracted for the fourth, fifth time. So what can we expect? If you sub-contract it four or five times, the quality of housing would really be sacrificed,” Robredo said.

She also blamed the slow pace of resettlement projects on the NHA’s centralized implementation of housing programs and called for its devolution to the local government units (LGUs).

“When I was in HUDCC, my proposal was to download [the programs] to the LGUs that can implement,” she noted. “The money’s there, the need is there, but it cannot be implemented because one government agency is overburdened.”

House committee on housing and urban development chair Rep. Albee Benitez said on Tuesday that he may file a perjury or even a syndicated estafa complaint against contractor J.C. Tayag Builders, Inc.

This was because J.C. Tayag Builders. Inc. owner Juanito Tayag denied during a September 18 hearing that substandard materials had been used in the construction of the houses for Yolanda victims in Eastern Samar.

Source: Inquirer.net

Robredo backs charges vs. ‘Yolanda’ housing contractor over substandard materials

Wed, 09/27/2017 - 22:20



BY THE MANILA TIMES ON SEPTEMBER 27, 2017

VICE President Maria Leonor “Leni” Robredo favors the lawmakers’ proposal to file perjury and syndicated estafa against the contractor of the housing project in Samar and Leyte for victims of Supertyphoon “Yolanda”.

“[To file charges vs. the contractors] is the order of the day. When I was with HUDCC, I have repeatedly pointed out problems on the Yolanda housing project. There are flaws in the policy,” Robredo, a lawyer, said in an interview during her visit to Pili, Camarines Sur.

Robredo, a former chairman of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC), said the problem lay with the fact that the National Housing Authority (NHA) was burdened with implementing the Yolanda housing project even if the local government units were capable of fulfilling such task.

The call for the filing of charges against contractor Juanito Tayag of J.C. Tayag Builders, Inc. was made by Robredo’s former colleagues in the House of Representatives — Reps. Ben Evardone of Eastern Samar and Albee Benitez of Negros Occidental who also served as chairman of the House Committee on Housing and Urban Development.

“The implementation [of the Yolanda housing project]is overly centralized with NHA in charge of all the contracts involving the Yolanda housing projects. Since it is centralized, it involves big contracts. Big contracts can only be won by triple A contractors which do not have presence in Leyte and Samar,” Robredo said.

These big-time contractors, Robredo said, tend to sub-contract the Yolanda housing project.

“We have discovered that the Yolanda housing project is being sub-contracted four, even five times. If you resort to sub-contracting the project four to five times, you will really compromise the quality of the project,” Robredo said.

“Aside from reduced quality, sub-contracting will delay the project. The NHA cannot implement the project alone because they are overburdened. That’s why I made a proposal that it’s the local government units (LGU) which should implement the project,” Robredo added.

Robredo argued that the LGU officials have the mandate to implement the housing project.

“Before I resigned [as HUDCC Chair], I called for a meeting with governors and most of them agree that the LGUs should take charge because they are directly accountable to their constituents. The public pressure to deliver is on the LGU officials,” Robredo said.

Source: Manila Times

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