As the City Government of Tagbilaran gets ready for the Saulog sa Tagbilaran 2015, questions arise on the significance of celebrating the said activity during the third regular session for March of the SP, presided by Vice Mayor Jose Antonio Veloso. The inquiry stemmed from Hon.Adam Jala who questioned Hon. Beben Inting after the latter ushered seven proposed resolutions requesting for financial assistance from the Provincial officials to help defray the expenses that will be incurred for the celebration of the Saulog.
It can be recalled that in last year’s Saulog, there were several issues on the lack of transparency on the expenses incurred. Hon. Adam wanted to ensure that the same issues would not resurface for this year’s activity, especially that an estimate of P5 million is allotted for the activity.
Hon. Butchie Zamora also asked Hon. Inting on the significance of said activity considering the long celebration, not to mention the huge expenses it will entail. The Saulog 2015 was launched last March 16 and will culminate on May 1. Hon. Veloso added that it is not possible that the Saulog is a celebration of the resiliency of the Tagbilaranons because the banners of the Saulog represent the feast of the City’s patron, St. Joseph. The banners alone do not represent all the sectors of the City and could not even depict resiliency.
Hon. Inting promised the SP that he will conduct further study regarding this and will present it to the body so that the body can have a unified response when asked about the significance of the said celebration.
The serious mode of the 12th Sangguniang Panlungsod of Tagbilaran eased out when the candidates of the Mutya sa Tagbilaran 2015 with the reigning Mutya sa Tagbilaran 2014, Ms. Geraldine Topsnik paid their courtesy call during the third regular session for March.
Vice Mayor Jose Antonio S. Veloso led the welcoming of the ladies and the rest of the Sangguniang Panlungsod members all gave them well-wishes and good luck in the Pageant and Coronation Night on April 24, 2015.
Thirteen out of the fifteen candidates entered the portals of the session hall with grace and poise. Each candidate possessed a different kind of charm and are all befitting to represent their barangays. Surely, the pageant night will be an event to look forward to as we anticipate the new Mutya sa Tagbilaran who will represent the City of Tagbilaran.
The Sangguniang Barangay of Bool will be holding and sponsoring cultural activities this month in preparation for their Barangay fiesta on April 5. The cultural activities will be one of the barangay’s means in fostering camaraderie and upholding harmonious relationships among their constituents.
Vice Mayor Toto handed financial assistance amounting to P50,000.00 to Punong Barangay Nestor Mendez last March 16 at the Barangay Hall of Bool and let the rest of the members of Sangguniang Barangay know that he will support them in the programs and activities of their barangay. VM Toto stressed the importance of that these activities which help promote the rich cultural heritage of Barangay Bool. These activities are also in line with the City’s thrust in promoting the tourism industry and help make our City known not only for its beautiful scenery but also with its bright and colorful history.
The Sangguniang Panlungsod officials and members are all excited to hold its first ever Lakbay Aral under the leadership of City Vice Mayor Jose Antonio S. Veloso. The Proposed Lakbay-Aral or Benchmarking and Organization Development Activity of the Sangguniang Panlungsod shall be done in Cagayan de Oro City and Iligan City. Tentative dates for the Lakbay-Aral shall be on April 15-17. The Lakbay-aral aims to determine the LGU’s best practices on Legislations, their programs, thrusts ad operations. This is in accordance with the City Government of Tagbilaran’s thrust to have an efficient and effective delivery of basic services to its constituents.
The 12th Sangguniang Panlungsod, headed by City Vice Mayor Jose Antonio S. Veloso , thanked LTO Registrar of Tagbilaran City, Mr. Erwin Patalinghog and SP04 Winnie Lopena, Head, Traffic Division, City PNP Office, Tagbilaran City for honoring the invitation sent by the body. Last week, Hon. Jerry Pabe, Chair of Committee on Public Utilities expressed his objection about the joint memorandum of LTO and LTFRB claiming that the LTO’s penalties of P5,000.00 on erring PUV’s is exorbitant and tantamount to extortion. Mr. Patalinghog joined the session to clear the allegations presented by Hon. Pabe and also to clarify the provisions of JAO 2014-01. Mr. Patalinghog emphasized that LTO do not apprehend tricycle franchises, but rather the licenses and the registrations of the unit. In the end, it has been agreed that tricycle franchises are not under the scope of JAO 2014-01. It has been further emphasized during the session that tricycle franchises are under the scope of the Local Government Unit and not under the LTO nor LTFRB.
As the celebration of Blood Compact Day is nearing, controversy on the Blood Compact site once again arises. A letter addressed to Hon. City Vice Mayor Jose Antonio S. Veloso by the concerned Tagbilaranons wanted to protest on the declaration of NHI that the site of the Blood Compact is in Hinawanan, Loay, Bohol and not in Bool, Tagbilaran City;
Controversy arose when then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo signed on April 2001, Republic Act No. 9093, “declaring March 16 of every year as a working special public holiday for the City of Tagbilaran and the province of Bohol to be known as the Blood Compact Day, and for other purposes in commemoration of the blood compact entered into by Spanish Captain-General Miguel Lopez de Legazpi and Boholano Chieftain, Datu Sikatuna, the first treaty of friendship and alliance between Spaniards and Filipinos on March 16, 1565 in Barangay Bool, City of Tagbilaran. Later in 2005, the National Historical Institute (NHI), a national government agency, to take care of the historical, or scientific or archaeological sites in the country, in its approved Resolution No. 04, series of 2005, declared that Loay town is the place where the blood compact took place on March 25, 1565.
The 12th SP decided that before making a stand on this issue, they will have to refer it to the City Tourism Council for further study and coordinate with the Provincial Government.
During the first regular session of the 12th Sangguniang Panlungsod for the month of March, Hon. Jerry Pabe, Chairman of the Committee on Public Utilities, expressed his vehement objection to Joint Administrative Order (or JAO) No. 2014-01, issued by the Land Transportation Office (LTO) and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB). This JAO has become the basis of the local LTO to charge by as much as P5,000.00, even on first offense, against tricycle drivers for common traffic and/or franchise violations that could go much higher to P15,000.00.
Hon. Jose Antonio Veloso suggested that before resorting to a resolution, LTO-Tagbilaran Registrar Erwin Patalinghug be invited during the succeeding sessions in order to clarify some traffic violations included in the JAO and to justify the rationale behind the creation of such administrative order.