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Plan for a fourth district goes straight to Congress

The establishment of another district in the city got a boost from Mayor Sara Duterte who will directly be endorsing the proposal to the House of Representative, without passing through the City Council.

In a press conference, the mayor said she will be endorsing the study conducted by the City Planning and Development Office (CPDO) to the House of Representatives.

“I have discussed this with the councilors and told them that since we are politicians, we need not interfere with the division and creation of districts,” Duterte said. “Even if we deny it or not, even when we say we don’t have biases, this will not be evinced by just words.”

Councilor Danilo Dayanghirang, the proponent, said the mayor will directly present to congressmen Paolo Duterte, Vincent Garcia and Isidro Ungab the feasibility study for the proposed fourth legislative district.

In his privilege speech during the Council session last Tuesday, Dayanghirang urged his fellow city legislators not to meddle with the mayor’s decision to endorse the study directly to the city’s three congressional representatives.

“Having the councilors interfering in the creation of the fourth district would make them look like its part of their political matters, which we must avoid,” Dayanghirang said.

The city’s three congressmen will endorse the proposal to the House of Representatives, which has the authority to create congressional districts.

“In this matter, it is premature for the councilors to join in the decision-making for the creation of another district because it is very political,” he added.

However, Councilor Diosdado Angelo Mahipus Jr. said the city councilors should have a say on the matter.

Mahipus, a lawyer, said that as the voice of the people, they have to voice out their opinions regarding the creation and division of the districts.

He said directly forwarding the matter to the Congress, without the participation of the local legislators, is not right.

“The City Council will be embarrassed, and I think it would appear that the Council would be deprived of their right,” Mahipus explained.

“In the creation of the new districts, there will be no plebiscite. Good thing if there’s a public consultation, because the congressional hearings will be held in Manila,” he added.

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