Hon. Aurora Virginia M. Almonte’s Speech: Inaugural Session of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Misamis Occidental

The Honorable Provincial Governor Herminia Ramiro, the Members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan: Hon. Mena Luansing, Hon. Emeterio Roa, Hon. Octavio O. Parojinog, Jr., Hon. Zaldy Daminar, Hon. Dan Navarro, Hon. Richard Centino, Hon. Tito Decina, Hon. Roy Yap, Hon. Lel Blanco, and Hon. Pablo Stephen Ty; the Department Heads of the Provincial Government and national agencies, guests, friends, ladies and gentlemen, good afternoon!

Foremost, I welcome everyone to the Inaugural Session of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Misamis Occidental. Please make yourself comfortable while you are here in our new session hall.

Today’s Inaugural Session marks the second leg of my journey as Vice-Governor and Presiding Officer of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of this Province. On this momentous occasion, I would like to express my gratitude to God, the Supreme Law Maker, that even when I was still a neophyte, He was always there, guiding me as I steered the previous Sanggunian to shore. With His grace, we were able to complete our journey at noontime on June 30, 2016. To all those who were made instruments by God, who were always there working with us through thick and thin, thank you very much; and let me make special mention of our ever-supportive lady Governor, “Ma’am Hermie, thank you so much!”.

Now, I have come this far; this is my second term. I thank our constituents for giving me a fresh mandate to lead and steer the new set of Sanggunian for the term of office 2016-2019. To the Board Members, I already said this during our Orientation Seminar, but I say it again. Your eagerness and positive attitude; the high degree of cooperation which you have shown during our previous activities have given me confidence and assurance that the next three years will be just fine. Concurrent with the new national leadership, we are placed in the situation where expectations of our people for change is so high. We cannot do otherwise, except to align our vision and our legislative agenda with the aspirations of our people, and of this administration. Our specific task for this Inaugural Session, aside from adopting our Internal Rules of Procedure, is the determination and composition of the different standing committees of this Sanggunian. I call on each member, that in so doing, the guiding principle in our choices do not rest on personal interest, but upon the faith in ourselves and our commitment to perform the tasks given to us with passion and sincerity.

We have so much work ahead of us, especially, in the drafting of the necessary Codes. Many of which have already been started by the previous Sanggunian. I leave it to your discretion on how you do it. Whether you start afresh or to continue on the process. Let me mention that The Code of General Ordinances is due for further committee meetings after it was submitted for public hearing; the Technical Working Group which has already started drafting the Tourism Code may be convened; the Technical Working Group of the Investment and Incentive Code may work on the working paper for the drafting of the same. We also need to enact The Health and Sanitation Code, The Revision of Real Property Assessment in the Province, and The 2nd Revision of the Revenue Code. On top of these Codes, as I said, we need to enact numerous local legislations necessary to align our legislative actions with the Go-Hermie and national leadership’s program of government.

I am sure that in our voyage ahead, we will bump into all types of weather. Once again, I rely on the support of our beloved Governor, Ma’am Hermie, the department heads and employees, both in the provincial and national government; the civil society organizations and the good people of our Province. With our faith in God and trust in each other, together, I believe, we can rise to the challenges that may confront us. We will surely reach the shore and complete our voyage! To God be the glory! Mabuhay ang Sangguniang Panlalawigan! Mabuhay ang Misamis Occidental!

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