Finally an Indigenous People’s Permanent Representative (IPMR) has been elected and affirmed by the National Commission for Indigenous People (NCIP) as the Lumad member of the City Council of Davao.
With the selection, the extended term of Halila Sudagar is finally over. But the election of the new IPMR in the Sangguniang Panlungsod of Davao City is not without controversy. Earlier there was one elected from barangay Biao Guianga. But the NCIP rejected that nominee because of questions on her qualification as Lumad. Her claim of having a 25 percent blood of the Bagobo-Guiangan-Klata tribe in her was not accepted by the NCIP.
Thus, pending resolution of the nominee’s case, Sudagar was allowed to serve the City Council on hold-over capacity. This despite the fact that she should have quit from her post when she filed her certificate of candidacy for councilor in the city’s second district during the last local election.
However, the sad note of the IPMR contest is that the earlier winner in the election conducted by leaders of the different IP communities in Davao City has to bow out from the scene because somehow, some people at the NCIP were not convinced of the documents supporting her claim of Lumad tribe membership. And it appears the court has sided with the NCIP in its decision on the case filed by the former nominee. It paved the way for the holding of another election of a new IPMR for the City Council. The new one got the nod of the NCIP.
We hope the new IPMR will not anymore be hassled with questions of his legitimacy as Lumad so he can proceed to dispose his responsibilities..
Last week we heard reports that a councilor from the third district of Davao City was planning to introduce an ordinance that will restrict residents to acquire cars and other 4-wheeel motor vehicles if they do not have a private parking space of their own.
We believe the idea is novel and will give back to the public the sidewalks of roads in residential areas including subdivisions. It will also reduce possibilities of misunderstanding among people who feel their right over public places is denied by those who allocate the roadsides for their private parking use.
However, we have doubts whether this ordinance, assuming that it will be passed by the local legislative body, will succeed in attaining its objectives. We even believe that many will question its constitutionality considering that there is no national law that should be the basis for the crafting of an enabling ordinance at the local government level.
Besides, owners of businesses dealing in the sale of either brand new or second hand vehicles will surely cry foul. In fact our personal take on the proposal is that such an ordinance is anti-business. It also infringes on the right of persons to enjoy convenience since it will prevent them from freely acquiring vehicle/s even if they can afford it.
Yes, with houses offered on house and lot package deal by subdivision developers, the sizes of lots are already so small that reserving a space for garage is not anymore feasible. And with the exorbitant cost of land, purchasing bigger home lot that will allow provision for a garage space could already cost a fortune especially for wage earners paid only a little over what is required to feed a family.
And how will such ordinance impact on the businesses of motor vehicle dealers in Davao City, more specifically those selling second hand or surplus units?
The Davao City Council probably has to suspend issuance or renewing its permits to operate in the city. For how can these businesses be able to sell their desired number of units when the prospective buyers are constrained from acquiring vehicles for lack of garage space inside their property?
It is on this aspect that the proponent of the planned measure has to ensure substantial study of its potential repercussions. They have to make sure that all stakeholders that stand to be affected by the proposed ordinance have to be consulted. After all, it is still the city’s economy as well as people, that will suffer the consequences of improperly thought-of measure regardless of its noble intentions.
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