Evasco delivers “Taho sa Lungsod,” Sen. TG Guingona is Guest Speaker

MARIBOJOC – Mayor Leoncio ‘Jun’ B. Evasco, Jr. delivered last January 18 a comprehensive ‘Taho sa Lungsod’ or State of the Town Address with Sen. Teofisto ‘TG’ Guingona III as guest speaker. The half-day event was held at the Dr. Abundio A. Echavez Memorial Sports and Cultural Center in Barangay Poblacion.

A prayer and singing of hymns opened the activity headed by Sangguniang Bayan member Cecilia P. Autentico. Executive Chief of Staff Oscar Francisco E. Valles gave the welcome message and rationale of the state of the town address. Valles explained why it was important for the people to know what their local government unit (LGU) has been doing with the taxes they pay and the trust they give to officials and employees.

Municipal Planning and Development Coordinator Maria Nenita R. Chiu presented the Maribojoc Situationer that centered on the current demography, such as population, households, population growth rate, total land area, density, gender and age distribution. Chiu also discussed the economic situationer on employment, agriculture and business.

The town’s social situationer focused on the residents’ access to water and the type of distribution system they availed, housing, access to electricity, persons with disability, health and sanitation, causes of death, nutrition and mal-nutrition statistics of pre-school and grade school children. Education as to number of schools per education level, literacy as well as the dropout rate was explained thoroughly.

Mayor Evasco delivered to Maribojochanons and invited guests the programs of the LGU under his administration, specifically from July 2007 until December 2012. The local chief executive reported the programs for the past five years and four months that had four specific goals, namely: social development, economic development, protection and conservation of the environment, and governance and administration.

Social development highly valued the distribution of social services as well as education through partnership with the local school board and private organizations, arts and culture development, health and nutrition, and risk reduction and disaster management. Economic development had agricultural activities that led to more economic opportunities, importance given to local trade and commerce, enhancing local industries through tourism, widened opportunities for local employment, provision of safe water for families and business establishments and the development of organic farming.

Under protection and conservation of the environment are balance of economic development and the preservation and conservation of the environment, the successful implementation of environmental laws, solid waste management and the Trees for Life program. Governance and administration focused on effective policy behind the implementation and realization of the main development issues, effective LGU organization, transparency in financial transactions and effective legislative laws.

Evasco shared how the LGU worked with the people of Maribojoc and its partners. The mayor personally invited Sen. Guingona to visit the town and see the numerous programs implemented aimed at alleviating poverty. The senator funded the 3-storey Multi-purpose Building and Training Center beside Poblacion barangay hall.

Among the major accomplishments of the LGU, include putting the town back in the map – as it gained recognition through the seal of good housekeeping and the galing pook awards, the successful implementation of the LGU-led cadastral survey/simultaneous systematic adjudication project, the “Himsog nga Pananum, Himsog nga Katawhan” program, Trees for Life program, the “Binhi sa Panginabuhi-an Demo Fram ug Training Center,” the Water project and the numerous infrastructures built.

During his talk, Sen. Guingona highlighted the programs of the Aquino administration that have continued to make an impact in the country.  Guingona disclosed that it was in Maribojoc that he saw what he has always been looking for – a transparent, participative and responsive LGU. He singled out Evasco as a local chief executive who personifies good governance. The senator proudly announced that he would ask his colleagues in the senate to visit the town and witness ‘real’ governance at work.

Vice-mayor Fructuoso ‘Tusoy’ F. Redulla, Jr. gave the closing remarks and requested Sen. Guingona to help the local government with the different concerns needing immediate response from the national government. Redulla mentioned the increased PhilHealth contributions and the need to review the agency’s policies. He also reiterated the importance of institutionalizing the allocation of the priority development assistance fund or PDAF of district and partylist representatives.

The activity gathered the Sangguniang Bayan members, LGU employees, department heads and heads of offices, representatives from the Holy Cross Parish and the Parish Pastoral Council and Punong Barangays with their respective officials, secretaries, treasurers, leaders and constituents. Leaders and members of People’s Organizations and those from the private institutions and the business sector also attended. DepEd administrators accompanied by their elementary and high school public school teachers and the Saint Vincent Institute faculty members and administrators were in full force. The DepEd family also prepared two intermission numbers while Poblacion Punong Barangay Arnie Turco was the master of ceremonies. #