The rightful winner in Pandi mayoral race

NOW that the court has spoken as it declares the legitimate winner in the mayoral race in the Bulacan town of Pandi during the May 10, 2010 elections, Mayor Enrico Roque is just on the right course to extend his hands of reconciliation and convince his poll rivals to be his partners in transforming the second-class farming municipality into a progressive first-class agricultural town.

Just last week, Bulacan Regional Trial Court’s Branch 79 Judge Olivia V. Escubio-Samar dismissed for lack of merit the election protest hurled by Roque’s closest rival Oliver Andres who alleged that the automated May 10 polls in the town were tainted with fraud and irregularities. The mayor’s counsels, Noel Roxas and Anicia Marquez, conclude the court was only right when it rules in Roque’s favor because his rival’s camp had failed to substantiate its allegations with valid proofs.

But it’s over, according to Roque. He says it’s time to set aside political differences as he rallies every residents to work with him hand-in-hand in order for him to effectively carry out pro-poor programs and projects primarily designed to boost livelihood opportunities for the people of Pandi.

He appeals: “Isantabi na po natin ang pulitika. Nagdesisyon na po ang hukuman at nananig na ang tunay na damdamin ng mamamayan ng Pandi. Panahon na po para tayo’y magka-isa at sama-sama nating isulong ang mga programa at proyekto para sa pagsulong at pag-unlad ng ating bayan.”

What’s good and quite admiring in him is that he didn’t let the poll protest derail his administration’s visions. Immediately after his proclamation and assumption to office, he buckles down and implements programs including election promises. The Pandi chief executive was resolute to show to his constituents particularly the local electorate that they didn’t err when they voted for him to lead them.

The mayor is really determined. He’s out to improve and protect the farm industry in his town where livestock farms are based.

True to his words, Roque has joined hands with the mayors of Sta. Maria, San Jose del Monte and Paombong and provincial officials led by Gov. Wilhelmino Sy-Alvarado and Vice Gov. Daniel Fernando in the extensive campaign against the proliferation of hot meat commonly called “botcha.”

Sy-Alvarado has called on the support of local executives in eradicating the shipment and selling of double-dead meat by putting more teeth on the existing ordinances against hot meat by amending provisions on penalty and imprisonment.

In response, Roque says his office and the local police in coordination with the Provincial Agriculture Office and the Provincial Veterinary Office are currently doing some inspections on hog farms and, at the same time, conducting operations in detecting the smuggling and shipments of double-dead meat. Arlie Calalo

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