Chambers of Commerce, DILG Usec Hinlo on NIR Dissolution by PRRD
The Bacolod City-based Metro Bacolod Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MBCCI) and Dumaguete City-based Negros Oriental Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NOCCI) yesterday issued a joint statement on the revocation of Executive Order No. 183 that created the Negros Island Region (Region 18).
Also, Negrosanon Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Undersecretary Jesus V. Hinlo issued his own statement on the dissolution of the NIR by President Rodrigo R. Duterte.
CHAMBERS OF COMMERCE
While the Negrosanons (Negros Oriental and Occidental) feel that it is good for Negros Island to have an integrated development plan for faster economic growth and continuous job creation, our national leaders know better, they have a broader macro perspective, and most likely, they know that what is good for the country is also good for Negros Island. And we respect the decision of the President.
Anticipating this development, MBCCI and NOCCI have proposed to NEDA Regional Directors Efren Carreon and Ro-ann Bacal to develop Negros Island as a Special Area for Development.
NOCCI and MBCCI will suggest that the Negros Island Special Area for Development be directed and managed by a Negros Island Development Council, composed of the following:
• Two Governors
• Two Regional Directors of NEDA of Regions 6 and 7
• City and Municipal Mayors
• Provincial Heads of National Government Agencies
• Representatives of Private / Business Sector
• Representatives of Academe.
The joint statement is signed by MBCCI President Frank A. Carbon and NOCCI President Edward C. Du.
Meanwhile, DILG Usec. Atty. JV Hinlo in his press statement said:
As a NEGROSANON, I am saddened with the decision of Pres. Rodrigo Duterte to abolish the Negros Island Region (NIR) through Executive Order No. 38, the reason given being the lack of funds to sustain its full operation.
However, as a FILIPINO, I appeal to my fellow NEGROSANONS to respect the decision of the President. Although we failed to convince the President to retain the NIR, we have to understand that the Administration has priority programs and projects that need funds that compete with the operational existence of the NIR.
As of the present, the Philippine Government needs the funds to support its priority programs to address problems in peace and order, education, hospitalization, poverty and infrastructure.
Although the dream of the NEGROSANONS to be a ONE ISLAND REGION is presently set aside, let us remember that our sacrifice would be for a noble cause, and that is to support the programs and projects of our Government to sustain the fight against the enemies of the state, to provide free education in state schools, to provide free medical assistance in government hospitals and to build infrastructures like buildings, roads and bridges.
Despite this set-back I believe that both Negros Occidental and Negros Oriental will continue to prosper with shared tourism, businesses and trade opportunities among their inhabitants.* (NDB / APT)