MANILA, Philippines - President Aquino has signed into law the bill creating a fourth legislative district in Bukidnon, where two of his allies in the Liberal Party hail from.
Republic Act 10184 reapportioning Bukidnon into four legislative districts was signed last Sept. 28. It will take effect 15 days after it was published in newspapers last Oct. 3.
Bukidnon is the home-province of Aquino’s political allies Sen. Teofisto Guingona III and former congressman Neric Acosta, the government’s environment czar and general manager of the Laguna Lake Development Authority.
Under the new law, a fourth congressman will be elected in the May 2013 polls to represent the new legislative district that comprises Valencia City and Kalilangan and Pangantucan towns.
Under the first district are the towns of Baungon, Libona, Malitbog, Manolo Fortich, Sumilao and Talakag, and under the second district, Malaybalay City, Impasugong, Cabanglasan, Lantapan and San Fernando.
Comprising the third legislative district are the towns of Kadingilan, Damulog, Dangcagan, Don Carlos, Maramag, Kibawe, Kitaotao and Quezon.
Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr., chairman of the Senate committee on local government, said the population of Bukidnon has steadily grown over the years and as such, the province needs an additional legislative district so it can be amply represented.
He cited 2010 statistics from the National Statistics Office that peg Bukidnon’s population at 1.2 million.
“The rule on reapportionment is based on the principle of equality of representation. Larger representative districts should, therefore, be entitled to more representatives in Congress. The people of the province of Bukidnon certainly deserve additional seats in the House of Representatives, after having complied with the Constitution,” Marcos said.