Councilors disagree over renaming of city streets-A A +A
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
CAGAYAN de Oro City councilors argued Tuesday over a proposed resolution renaming two streets in the city in honor of the founder and the former minister of Iglesia ni Cristo (INC).
Councilor Alvin Calingin authored three resolutions declaring July 27, 2012 and every year thereafter as INC Day in Cagayan de Oro City, renaming the Montalvan St. as “Felix Y. Manalo St.” in honor of the founder of INC; and naming the road from the junction of Concordio Diel St. and Villarin St. in Barangay Carmen to the landfill in upper Dagong up to the boundary of Barangay Canitoan as “Eraño V. Manalo St.” in honor of INC’s former executive minister.
With the large population of INC in the city, Calingin wanted the immediate approval of the resolution, citing that INC’s anniversary is fast approaching.
However, Calingin’s proposal spawned several reactions from the council, particularly from the two minority opposition members, Councilors Edgar Cabanlas and Roger Abaday.
City Councilors Ramon Tabor and Alden Bacal also opposed to the proposal, which they claimed was so “sudden.”
Abaday requested the resolution to be deferred, citing there are still provisions that need further discussion.
For his part, Cabanlas questioned Calingin’s eagerness to rename the streets in favor of INC.
“Their anniversary does not make it any easier to rename the streets without the approval of the historical commission,” he said.
Cabanlas said there is time for everything and that decisions should not be rushed as renaming a street undergoes a process.
Bacal, who also moved for the deferment, cited that the renaming of the streets would need time and a series of consultations.
However, Calingin insisted that the resolution must be approved immediately, citing “we no longer have much time since the INC’s anniversary is already near.”
The heated argument resulted in a two-minute recess. Majority of administration councilors, except Tabor, went near the presiding area to come up with a decision.
After the recess, Bacal withdrew his petition to defer the resolution, which resulted in the approval of the resolution on first reading.
In a related development, Eduardo Montalvan, a direct descendant of Dr. Antonio J. Montalvan, cried foul over the decision of the City Council.
In a text message, Montalvan said his family does not agree with the renaming of the streets.
He said the law says that only the National Historical Commission can change the name of the city’s streets.
“Why would they need to rename it when the people are already used to that name?” Montalvan said.
He added “it is a stupid measure designed to get the support and votes of the INC.”
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on July 12, 2012.