Osmeña optimistic BOPK gets upper hand after polls
Osmeña said he is willing to go to the barangay to explain to the people why he needs their support.
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Osmeña optimistic BOPK gets upper hand after polls
Jean Marvette A. Demecillo (Associated Press) - April 12, 2018 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña vowed to change the political landscape in the barangay to ensure control over the City Council after the May 14 barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections.

Osmeña said he is willing to go to the barangay to explain to the people why he needs their support. The mayor explained that he needs his candidates to win in the barangay and SK elections for him to succeed in his plan to kick out Philip Zafra as ex-officio member of the City Council and get another seat for the SK Federation. Zafra is currently the president of the Association of Barangay Councils.

At present, 67 barangay captains out of 80 are allied with the opposition. Only 13 barangays are with Osmeña. The mayor said that if his allies win the two ex-officio seats, Bando Osmeña Pundok Kasuwagan will gain control of the City Council.

“Big (impact if there’s a change in the political landscape) because we have to break the tie in the City Council. It’s 8-8 and if there’s a tie, the vice mayor decides,” Osmeña told reporters.

“You know I want to push through with the barangay election, I have an agenda and it’s not hidden. I need to kick out Zafra and I need to get the SK. I need to get the majority in the city council. So I’m willing to fight it out and tell it to the people to give me their support so that we can change the ABC and will get the SK,” he said earlier.

The mayor said he wants to implement programs and projects for the city and these programs need the City Council’s approval.

“My hands are tied right now. We can’t even hire consultants ‘coz they will not approve because I don’t give them consultants. What do they need consultants for?” the mayor said.

Several candidates in the upcoming barangay and SK elections visited Osmeña at the City Hall yesterday. According to Osmeña, his allies were asking how to respond to issues involving his administration like the controversial Bus Rapid Transit project.

Osmeña said he told his allies that he will go to the barangay to explain to the people the benefits of the BRT project and other projects that the city will have in the future. Among those who went to see Osmeña was incumbent T. Padilla councilman and former ABC president Michael Rallota.

Rallota said he is running for barangay captain and he intends to challenge the ABC presidency. Rallota believes he will win because of his experience. Rallota criticized the current ABC administration for reportedly not doing so much for the barangays.

Ask for comment, Zafra said anyone is welcome to run for public office. As for him, he said he will also seek reelection and he wants to retain his position as ex-officio member in the City Council.

If reelected, Zafra said he would push for the setting up of Barangay Officials Academy that would help improve the management skills of barangay officials. —/FPL (FREEMAN)

 

TOMAS OSMEñA
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