Ex-mayor: let’s clarify terms before debate-A A +A
Tuesday, July 3, 2012
BACOLOR -- Former Bacolor mayor Romeo Dungca said he is ready to take on the challenge of incumbent mayor Jose Maria Hizon to face him in a debate that would tackle issues involving the town’s education and agriculture sector.
However, Dungca has a few exemptions.
“I am ready to clarify before each and every constituent here in Bacolor all the issues raised by Mayor Hizon. But before I do that I would like to guarantee everyone first that the incumbent mayor understands the difference between a scholarship program and his impression of what a ‘dole-out system’ is all about,” Dungca said.
Dungca’s reaction stemmed from a recent news report that quoted Hizon saying that his reasons for slashing the town’s scholarship fund from P3.5 million to P1.5 million was because the practice of providing scholarship programs to poor but deserving students makes Bacolor families dependent on a “dole-out system.”
“We want to teach people how to fish and I don’t want my constituents to be dependent on the dole-out system, that is why I am giving priority to those who want to till their lands for livelihood,” Hizon said.
“We all know that a dole-out is synonymous to charity. Hence, when the government fulfills its obligations to the people, take for example by assuring poor but deserving students a chance to get better education through a scholarship program, that is not and will never be charity,” Dungca explained.
Dungca stressed that “To engage in a debate at this point is simply inappropriate,” as he reiterated that Hizon was, perhaps, out of context because of his “over-enthusiasm.”
He said “Mayor Hizon should slow down and hold his horses before challenging me or anyone for that matter to a debate.”
“I am optimistic that the good mayor will eventually come to his senses and understand the difference between a scholarship program and a dole-out system. And until then, I believe that would be the appropriate time for us to discuss whatever platforms both of us have prepared for the people of Bacolor,” Dungca said.
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on July 03, 2012.