On 100th day, Marcaida seeks unity in divided City Hall

Mayor Luis Marcaida III on Monday marked his first 100 days in office with a traditional State of the City Address (SOCA), calling for political unity even as majority of the legislature of Puerto Princesa City snubbed the event.

Marcaida, who assumed his post following the dismissal of incumbent mayor and erstwhile political ally Lucilo Bayron, brushed off the absence of City councilors and several key officials in the morning gathering, stating he was “working out our differences and giving time for adjustments.”

He reasoned that the City Council was preparing to hold its regular Monday session and its members could not attend the ceremony. The Council, however, decided not to hold its regular Monday session.

Criticized by his former allies for assuming Bayron’s post while the latter was appealing his suspension, Marcaida sought to reach out to other leaders.

“Ituro niyo po sa akin ang mga bagay na hindi ko pa alam. Handa po akong makinig sa inyo. Magtulungan po tayong lahat,” he said.

He justified his decision to assume Bayron’s post despite the warnings from the latter’s supporters as necessary and had nothing to do with his political plans.

“Hindi pagmamadali kundi pagtalima,” he said.

In his accomplishment report, Marcaida ticked off a series of achievements by his administration including the installation of street lights along the main thoroughfare, the improvements of landfill and enhancement of garbage collection, creation of artisan wells and even the creation of a City Cemetery Management.

He also described his efforts to promote the Puerto Princesa Underground River (PPUR) following the recent issuance by the US Embassy to its nationals.

He thanked the support of the business sector and asked them to continue investing in the City to generate more tourism-related establishments.

Marcaida said he intends to carry out the plans that were initiated last year. He also stated his plans for the long-term response and relocation of the victims of the recent landslide and fire in the City.

He also promised to build a cemetery for the Muslim community and to improve the coastal bay.

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