Friday, February 19, 2010

Tagbilaran Bohol Corruption

Sunday Post: The war of attrition between Mayor Lim and Vice Mayor Veloso arising from the P50 million DBP loan and the subsequent walkout of minority councilors has rubbed in to members of the city's majority bloc. 

Commenting on the walk-out, Councilor Oscar Glovasa said the city is the biggest loser in the controversial gesture of the minority members of the SP Monday.

"We have encountered another delay in the rehabilitation of our city roads because of our own making," he said of his peers.

Friday's session was marred by a walk-out by the minority members led by Vice Mayor Veloso and his allies, Councilors Edgar Kapirig, Zenaido Rama, Anne Mariq uit Oppus and Bebiano Inting.

The minority bloc claimed there was no walk-out.

Inting said they left the session after it was already adjourned.

Interviewed after the incident, Veloso said he adjourned the session after it became "unruly".

This version of the incident was denied by the majority bloc which continued the session after the walk-out.

Councilor Danilo Bantugan said Veloso could not adjourn the session since there was no motion.

"Even an ordinary councilman in the barrio knows that for the presiding officer to adjourn the proceedings, a motion is first required," he added.

Councilor Leonides Borja also disputed Veloso's claim that the session had become unruly saying the recordings of the proceedings will bear this out.

"Maybe they forgot that the session was covered live and that the people heard what actually transpired," he added.

Glovasa said that the walk-out again delayed the approval of the resolution authorizing the mayor to sign the agreement with the Development Bank of the Philippines with the city treasurer.

"It means that the people who have been clamoring for the rehabilitation of the city roads will have to wait a little longer," he added.

Glovasa, who is wrapping up his second term as councilor to run for Congress, said the walk-out is "an embarrassment" to the city because it shows what kind of councilors the city has.

Calling the walk-out gimmickry, Glovasa said it shows that the minority councilors are more concerned with stunts than with actual results.

Councilor Edgar Bompat, who presided over the session after Veloso and his group walked out, said the majority bloc is considering the possibility of censuring the minority councilors for their acts of disrespect to the council.

Bantugan said that if the minority bloc refuses to participate in the next session, they will resort to extreme measures.

"If they have no respect for us and for the city government, they should at least respect the people who pay our salaries for us to attend the sessions," he added.

Borja lamented that while they have moved the session day next week from Friday to Tuesday so that they will not miss a session day, the minority bloc instead defaulted on their responsibilities.

Glovasa denied there is any irregularity in the loan and in the implementation of the project saying the Commission on Audit is vigilant in ensuring that the public funds are well spent.

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