Representative Franz “Chicoy” Alvarez is supporting the division of Palawan into separate provinces and converting it into an independent region, stating it will help improve governance throughout the existing province.
Congressman Alvarez urged other Palawan leaders to take advantage of the present administration’s push for federalization as an opportunity to boost Palawan’s potential to achieve rapid growth.
“Ito ang pinaka-tamang panahon na isulong ‘yan kasi ang ating president ay pabor na pabor sa federalism. So ito ang pinaka-magandang timing at ang mga leaders sa city at sa probinsya ay magkakasundo,” Alvarez said.
He however stressed the importance of the local population’s support to the move which was recently initiated by the provincial board.
Alvarez said that he sees the advantages of the plan as it will hasten the delivery of basic services due to reduced number of municipalities to be managed by provincial leaders.
Even with the requirements set by the Local Government Code for creating provinces, Alvarez said he is optimistic that the plan for the division of the province will take place before the term of President Rodrigo Duterte ends in 2022.
Section 8 of the Local Government Code states that division of an LGU must comply with the requirements on income, land area, and population. The law also requires the holding of a plebiscite in the political unit directly affected.
Critics of the plan said that this move will create political dynasty and will open more slots in the political seat for non-performing and corrupt politicians.
“Kahit naman ano ang gagawin natin, mayroon naman magiging kritiko. Ang pinaka-importante dito ay itong gagawing consultation sa publiko. Dito natin makikita ang pulso ng probinsya. Ngayon kung sabihin ng ating mga kababayan na mas marami ang ayaw, wala tayong magagawa. Hindi natin isusulong kasi ayaw ng mga taga-Palawan. Siyempre ang mananaig ay ang boses ng karamihan,” he said.
Initial discussions in the provincial board has revolved around the proposal to designate the towns of Roxas, Cagayancillo, El Nido, Coron and other neighboring towns as belonging to Northern Palawan province, while the province of Central Palawan will be composed of the towns of Roxas, San Vicente, Dumaran, Araceli, and Taytay. Aborlan and other southern towns will constitute the Southern Palawan province.
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