OATH-TAKING. Executive Judge Estefanio Libutan Jr. (3rd from left) is flanked by (from left to right) Portia Familiaran and husband Vice Mayor El Cid Familiaran, Mayor Evelio Leonardia and wife Elsa Leonardia, and Lone District Rep. Greg Gasataya after the oath-taking rites of the Grupo Progreso winners at GT Hotel in Bacolod City on Friday afternoon (May 17, 2019). All three officials won fresh mandates for a second term. (Photo by Nanette L. Guadalquiver)
BACOLOD CITY -- Reelected Mayor Evelio Leonardia has emphasized the need for teamwork among the new city officials to enable his administration to steer Bacolod to greater heights in the next three years.
Leonardia, who took his oath of office together with the other winning candidates of Grupo Progreso before Executive Judge Estefanio Libutan Jr. on Friday afternoon, said their party presented a platform of government he wants to implement in his second term.
“The only way we can do this is if all of us will join hands. Together we will work hard for this. I did not entertain the thought of pursuing this alone,” the mayor said in his message.
The group’s three-point “Agenda for Action” aims to accelerate socio-economic growth; efficiently deliver basic services; and strengthen local governance.
“We did not write this just to win the elections. We did this because we intend to do this,” Leonardia said, adding that all candidates of Grupo Progreso signed the party’s campaign platform “in the spirit of accountability and transparency.”
“I believe in teamwork. Our administration reached this point because of the support and cooperation of everybody,” he added.
Grupo Progreso was the big winner in the May 13 elections here. The ruling coalition won 14 out of the 15 seats, led by re-electionists Leonardia, lone District Rep. Greg Gasataya, and Vice Mayor El Cid Familiaran, who were all given fresh mandates for a second term.
A total of 11 out of the 12 City Council seats went to the Grupo Progreso candidates led by re-electionist Councilor Cindy Rojas. Other winners were Renecito Novero, Simplicia Distrito, Carlos Jose Lopez, Al Victor Espino, Archie Baribar, Israel Salanga, Dindo Ramos, Bartolome Orola Sr., Ana Marie Palermo, and Elmer Sy.
The 12th spot was clinched by opposition candidate, Wilson Gamboa Jr., also a re-electionist.
“Our people should never worry about not having the voice of the opposition. I’m sure there will be,” Leonardia said.
During Friday’s oath-taking rites, Libutan also sworn in Gasataya and Familiaran, along with the nine newly-elected Grupo Progreso councilors. Lopez was out of the country while Espino was in Manila. (PNA)