Degamo proposal to create 3rd Negros province a diversionary tactic, says mayor
BACOLOD CITY — Mayor Renato Gustilo of San Carlos City in Negros Occidental said on Friday, February 3, that the proposal of Negros Oriental Gov. Roel Degamo to create a third province on Negros Island is nothing but a diversionary tactic.
Gustilo pointed out that a translink highway has been made to shorten the travel time between San Carlos and Bacolod, and there is no need for a new province.
“Degamo is really wise to divert the attention away from the creation of the NIR (Negros Island Region),” he said.
Degamo, in a meeting with Negros Occidental Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson last Wednesday, said the new region should include four provinces to ensure equal voting at Regional Development Council (RDC) meetings.
The bill pending in Congress calls for the creation of a new region composed of Negros Occidental and Oriental, and Siquijor.
But Degamo wants the new region to include four provinces by creating a third one from Vallehermoso in Negros Oriental to Escalante City in Negros Occidental.
Degamo had opposed the creation of the NIR during the time of former Gov. Alfredo Marañon but eventually was forced to concede, said Gustilo, referring to the short-lived island region created by virtue of an executive order issued by then President Benigno Aquino III.
Gustilo said Degamo is perhaps offering Vallermoso for the new province because the people there did not support him for governor.
“The question is are we ready for that (third province)? It takes a lot of study to create a new province,” he said.
Councilor Richard Jaojoco, former Toboso mayor, said he is in favor of the creation of a third province as it would be advantageous to his town.
“We should sit down and look at the pros and cons,” he said.
READ: Negros governors split on Negros Island Region revival
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