2 Cebu cities dream big

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Thursday, August 28, 2014

STATE OF TWO CITIES.  Mandaue City Mayor Jonas Cortes (above, left) greets Consolacion Mayor Teresa Alegado (right) and Cordova Mayor Adelino Sitoy.


CEBU - Mayor Jonas Cortes of Mandaue City announced Wednesday a new vision for the city: to be the country’s primary source of high-quality manufactured consumer products by 2020.

In his State of the City Address, the third-termer mayor said the City is up to the challenge of keeping itself above the competition as the economies of Southeast Asian countries become fully integrated next year.

“In pursuit of competitiveness on the global stage, we must bring to the rest of the world the best of Mandaue,” he said.

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Cortes delivered yesterday afternoon a 30-minute speech updating his constituents of the City’s progress over the past 12 months.

He spoke at the Hall of Fame of the City Hall before City councilors, department heads and private sector representatives.

To achieve the City’s new vision, it has partnered with the Institute for Solidarity in Asia (ISA) and adopted ISA’s good governance framework called the Performance Governance System.

In line with its vision, the City has come up with 14 initiatives.

These include creating an expo business plan and infrastructure; creating the Bantay Mandaue Command Center; revising the Investment Code; getting an ISO certification; amending the Revenue Code; and implementing an innovative socialized housing program.

“As the City Government focuses its efforts on pursuing our vision, we have also intensified our efforts to create the welcome and hospitable environment ideal for the investment we seek to attract,” Cortes said.

P151M on drainage

Cortes reported that 1,740 new businesses have opened in the city, “boosting our already bustling economy.”

These investments infused P4.1 billion in direct capital into the local economy.

The new investments will help the City hit the P2 billion-mark in income, he said
Cortes also reported that the City has installed 2.3 kilometers of drainage lines.

With more ongoing drainage projects, Cortes said the City will have installed about four kilometers of drainage lines by September.

Cortes said the City has spent P150.9 million to improve roads and drainage lines.

Since August 2013, the City has concreted 2.8 kilometers of “durable roads”.

Quick change

Cortes reported that 106 classrooms were repaired less than six months after the 7.2 magnitude earthquake that struck Bohol and Cebu last Oct. 15.

“Because of unexpected disasters, the City’s priorities have been changed and we were compelled to answer and address the damage caused by the earthquake,” he said.

Cortes said the City had to forgo its plan of building a new City Hall to repair classrooms and build a new public market.

The City’s public market had to be abandoned after it was severely damaged by the earthquake.

According to Cortes, the City gave P1.2 million in relief goods and cash aid to residents who had to evacuate and whose homes were damaged when super typhoon Yolanda struck last Nov. 8.

The City also sent financial help to other towns and cities ravaged by the typhoon.

Cortes also reported the installation of traffic lights in nine major road intersections, the creation of the Mandaue Command Center, and the training of 100 Barangay Disaster Brigade Volunteers.

36 classrooms

To fight illegal drugs, Cortes said the City has revived the City Anti-Drug Abuse Council and will soon establish anti-drug councils in the barangays.

He reported that 85 drug dealers and 87 drug users have been arrested in the past year, with 159 cases filed in court.

In education, Cortes said the City has spent P51.6 million to acquire 1.5 hectares of land where school buildings will soon be constructed.

The City has built 36 classrooms this year with the help of the Aboitiz Foundation, Security Bank, Visayan Electric Company, Aboitizland, Aklat Gabay at Pag-alaga Foundation and Jollibee Foundation.

Cortes said 103 classrooms have been built in partnership with the sector since he assumed office.

The mayor also said he has endorsed to the City Council amendments in the Revenue Code, as well as the new Investment Code and the revised Comprehensive Land Use Plan.

For performing well, Cortes also commended the City’s Public Employment Service Office.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on August 28, 2014.

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