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Bacolod City, Philippines Wednesday, October 23, 2013
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Poll peace pact signing Friday

A covenant signing will be held at 5:30 p.m. on Friday at the Bacolod City Public Plaza among candidates for barangay captain to ensure a safe and fair October 28 Barangay Elections in Bacolod City.

The program initiated by Philippine National Police will be attended by the candidates, and representatives of the PNP, Commission on Elections, and the Church.

A “peace walk” will be held from the Capitol Lagoon to the plaza on Friday for the signing.

Meanwhile, Bacolod Vice Mayor Greg Gasataya said yesterday that they hope the cooperation among the Sangguniang Panlungsod members will continue, whatever the outcome of the barangay elections.

This was his reaction to the pronouncement of Mayor Monico Puentevella that, by the end of November they (his party) will have the majority in the SP.

“That is democracy. We know that, by the end of November, when the Sangguniang Kabataan representative steps down, in reality the opposition will lead in terms of numbers in the SP,” although we do not know yet the outcome of the Barangay Elections, Gasataya said.

But, on their part, in many instances in the past, even if they had the majority it was never an issue with regards to cooperation with the Office of the Mayor. This is with regard to requests for budget or supplemental budget, authority and other needs of the Office of the Mayor, he said.

“Let us just wait and see. I hope that this cooperation among the members of the Council will continue, whatever is the outcome of the Barangay Elections, especially by the end of November when the SK representative steps down,” Gasataya said.

Gasataya said he has been fair to all members of the Council regardless of whether they belong to the same political party or not. He also consults them when it comes to issues and concerns that they need to address, he said.

“So, the cooperation will continue, especially now that we will start scheduling our deliberations and committee hearings in line with the proposed 2014 annual budget.”

Councilor Roberto Rojas, chairman of the SP Committee on Appropriations and Finance, is now studying the budget and they will ask him about the schedule of their committee hearings on it.

The partymates of Gasataya under the Nationalist People’s Coalition-Grupo Progreso now comprise the majority.

They are Rojas, Councilor Carlos Jose Lopez, Em Ang, Caesar Distrito, Alex Paglomutan, Mona Dia Jardin and SK representative Keith Emmanuel Ramos.

Those who ran under the MKK party of Puentevella are his son, Councilor Claudio Puentevella, and Councilors Wilson Gamboa Jr., Ana Marie Palermo and Jocelle Batapa-Sigue, while Councilors Sonya Verdeflor, Archie Baribar and El Cid Familiaran ran under the Magnificent Seven ticket.*CGS

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