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PIA Press Release
2007/06/15

Samar Vice Gov pushes Catbalogan citihood; Comelec sets plebiscite

By Ninfa B Quirante

Catbalogan, Samar (15 June) -- Re-electionist Samar Vice Governor Jesus Redaja urges the Catbalogan populace to troop to the poll centers tomorrow to answer a very significant question that has hounded this capital town of Samar for decades.

In support to the massive Yes campaign of Catbalogan Mayor Coefgredo 'Tekwa' Uy and party, Redaja guested on Aksiyon radio DYMS yesterday, June 14, to beckon some 48,000 voters to answer this question: "Do you approve the conversion of the municipality of Catbalogan in the province of Samar into a component city to be known as the city of Catbalogan pursuant to RA 9391?"

Citing a significant increase in the Internal Revenue allotment (IRA) from 77 M to as much as 200 M, Redaja said, would spell a lot of difference.

Redaja claims, as a former Catbalogan Mayor he was once as rabid as Tekwa in pushing for the Caytbalogan citihood.

Similarly in a forum done in the public market earlier, Uy and company flaunted increased investments, IRA increase, Infrastructure projects, employment generation, enhanced agricultural production due to opening of farm to market roads, improved health services and purchase of ambulances and modern medical equipments, additional PhilHealth coverage.

The citihood, they added will also usher in an enhanced Clean and Green Program, Scholarship programs and environmental protection.

When Antonio Vista, chairman of the local Tricycle Group called Nagkaka-urosa, Aktibo nga Paragtraysikol, Andam, Intresado ngan Disiplinado (NAPAID) raised his concern about the rumored phase out of the pedicabs, the Mayor promised that the pedicabs will never be phased out as it is already a part of Catbalogan culture, but drivers will be given seminars on how to conduct their vehicles properly.

As to increase in taxes, the party cited that RA 9391 ensures a five-year tax-increase moratorium.

Meanwhile, COMELEC Officer Josefina Aguilar said that the COMELEC has already conducted an orientation for the teachers to act as Board of Election Inspectors (BEI) for the Saturday event. As of presstime, ballot boxes were being hauled to the Municipal Hall of Catbalogan.

As to Calbayog City 's strong opposition to the law, MLGOO Leonardo Zarzata said that the battle between Yes and No is not a personal battle.

The movers have tagged Calbayog City Mayor Mel Senen Sarmiento as the number one kontrabida in Catbalogan's quest for citihood.

With all the preparations set, Mayor Tekwa said that if Catbaloganons are for progress, they should vote for a YES! (PIA-Samar) [top]

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