June 29, 2016
Our Guest of Honor – Vice President Ma. Leonor “Leni” Robredo, Congressman Gabby Bordado Jr., Mayor John Bongat, Members of the 12th Sangguniang Panlungsod, colleagues in government, Barangay Officials, friends, guests, my fellow Naguenos.
On May 9, 2016, we witnessed a landslide victory for Naga. At the national level, history was made as a Nagueňo, the widow of our beloved former Naga City Mayor Jesse Robredo, was elected the second highest official of the land. In the district, we also saw how our former colleague, in his own words, was kicked up to Congress.
At the city level, the whole Team Naga is once again vested with the complete trust and confidence of the Nagueňos. Amidst decadent strategies to divide us, both from within and from without, we have firmly stood our ground and remained united. Our enemies have tempted us with means of short-term indulgence, but we, as a people, have strongly declared that the city’s long-term success and our children’s prosperity are non-exchangeable and non-tradable.
For your unwavering conviction and undeniable commitment to Naga’s sustainable and inclusive development, Dios Mabalos:
Sa gabos na mga Nagueňo na nanindugan sa padagos na pag-uswag asin progreso kan ciudad!
Sa mga pag-iriba sa Team Naga asin sa City Hall, kina Congressman Gabby Bordado asin Vice President Leni Robredo asin sa mga amigo na daing patod na nagtiwala sa kapasidad asin liderato kan saindong lingkod.
Sa sakong agom asin mga aki na dayaday an pagkamoot asin pag-intindi.
Sa mga lider sa barangay – mga kapitan, mga kagawad, mga pamayo kan manlaen-laen na organisasyon asin mga “campaign volunteers” – na labi-labi an pagtabang asin pag-anduyog sa satuyang paghiro pasiring sa Mas Maogmang Lugar.
Thanks to your energy and time, opportunities for Naga’s robust growth are now waiting in our doorsteps. To tell you truth, I am excited with the city’s future, though indeed, the past three years have been bountiful and fruitful.
During my inaugural message in 2013, I forwarded two key points where the Sangguniang Panlungsod’s performance must be measured, namely: 1) promptness to pass sound legislations and 2) capacity to pass so-called welfare legislations, along the spirit that: “He who has less in life should have more in law.” On the first, we invested in modernizing our legislative procedures and we set up mechanisms for monitoring of our progress. As a result, the disposal rate of the city council went up from a mere 28.57% in July 2013 to 87.46% in June 2015.
Meanwhile, on the second point, we opened our sessions to the public and solicited their comments on both proposed and enacted legislations. The Sangguniang Panlungsod Student Participation, the iENGAGE and the Bisekleta sa Barangay have made sure that our people are part of our policy-making processes. To ensure that the grass-roots are truly well-involved, the council has even went out of its way to bring down the city’s best governance practices to the barangays via our ENABL2E Program.
An efficient government coupled with an engaged citizenry is the reason behind coming up with responsive measures that have shaped Naga as the Most Competitive Component City in the Philippines. It is also the reason why our city council was hailed as among the Outstanding Sangguniang Panlungsod of the country.
The past was bright, but, as I said before, I strongly believe that the coming years will be much brighter. The best will definitely become better.
On the part of the Sangguniang Panlungsod, it is my intention to advance the gains of existing mechanisms, learn from lessons of history and, from there, plan and draw a world-class, self-reliant and caring city not just for this generation but also for the next ones. The best time to plant a tree is now.
Given this, it is my desire to, as soon as possible, draft and subject to your scrutiny a proposed measure crafting the city’s basic ordinance and 30-Year Development Plan. Businesses in the city are vigorously expanding. Investors and migrants are coming. Along with it, traffic is congesting and our population is exponentially increasing. Thus, in order to avert the problems that come along with development, we need to strategize as early as today and put in place the necessary preventive and corrective protocols and systems.
The 30-Year Naga City Development Plan will also serve as a roadmap, a blueprint. Thru comprehensive consultation with all sectors of the community, the plan will contain the aspirations and dreams of the Nagueňos and, as such, will serve as a guide or decision-criteria for existing and future city officials.
Our critics say that Naga is no longer a Maogmang Lugar. I think their claim will be true in two to three years. Because by then, Naga will be a Mas Maogmang Lugar.
We will never rest on our laurels. With the able leadership of Mayor John Bongat, the guidance of Congressman Gabriel Bordado and Vice President Leni Robredo and, of course, the support of each and every Nagueňo, the city will soar to further heights.
Mabuhay an Naga! Mabuhay kitang mga Nagueño!