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Tempted to run for councilor

bu City Councilor in the South District come May 9, 2022, election because I want to contribute something to reduce the worsening social imbalance amid Covid-19 pandemic.

I don’t want to discuss about how the incumbent Cebu City Council appropriated money for alleged projects of the executive department, until the P18 billion proceeds of the South Road Properties (SPR) is almost gone.

I don’t know if the same Cebu City Council who approved all the budgets of the executive department can demand a full accounting of those public funds before proceeding to tackle the 2022 annual budget.

I know that I am not cut out for politics, and I have no name in the political field. I can only give my one cent worth of tips to the city councilors.

First tip. Water is the leading problem not only in Cebu City but Metro Cebu. I know that if Metropolitan Cebu Water District (MCWD) will construct water dams in Mananga and other areas, the water utility firm needs at least P20 billion. If MCWD will borrow money to implement such projects, the water rate will go up because of a huge debt.

So, my solution if I were a councilor is to pass a resolution requesting the National Government through Congress to allocate P20 billion for MCWD to be incorporated in the General Appropriations Act (GAA). In that manner, MCWD can construct water dams without debt. In that way, the water rate will even reduce to the benefit of all water consumers. If we have low water rate, the income of the people, including that of a minimum wage earner will increase and the more we can uplift their living condition.

Remember, water is a right because we all drink water. It is not like a driver’s license which is a privilege that the Land Transportation Office can revoke if there is a violation.  Water is life because we all drink it in order to survive.

My second tip. The government must now give salaries to all barangay officials, not a mere honorarium which will not compensate their works. Aside from honorarium only, barangay officials are not even members of the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS). So, both elected and appointed barangay officials cannot avail of any benefit from GSIS.

Barangay officials are in the forefront of public service. Many are even rendering service 24 hours a day. Yet, they are the least paid public servants. While we’ve heard that officials of several government agencies and government-owned and controlled corporations are receiving millions of pesos in salary monthly, the honorarium of barangay officials is not enough for decent food for the family.

By the way, what’s this I’ve heard that a councilor has filed a resolution increasing the burial assistance for indigent families from P10,000 to P15,000? If that is true, then the public must know that FONUS Cebu Federation of Cooperatives has submitted to the Cebu City Government a proposal that it will provide complete funeral service to indigent families at P10,000. 

That proposal was approved by Mayor Edgar Labella last year and instructed his staff, Atty. Maru Salvatierra to process the memorandum of agreement between him and FONUS Chairperson Ellen Limocon, the CEO of multi-billion Lamac Multi-Purpose Cooperative. But until now, Atty. Maru did not even send a courtesy letter to Limocon about it.

Now, may I ask Atty. Maru what happened to the FONUS proposal amid this move of a city councilor to increase the burial assistance to indigent families from P10,000 to P15,000? She owes an answer, not to me, but to the people.