INTERIOR and Local Government Secretary Manuel Roxas II said the residents of the two Negros provinces need not worry if they will not host certain regional offices under the Negros Island Region (NIR).

“You don't need to worry because in reality, the bulk of the transactions happen at the provincial, city, or municipal level," Roxas said during the meeting of the NIR Technical Working Group last Friday.

Negros Occidental will host 14 regional offices while Negros Oriental will get 16 regional offices in the three- to five-year transition period for the NIR until the permanent regional center is set up in the boundary of Kabankalan City and Mabinay town.

Top officials of Negros Oriental are also proposing for block voting in the Regional Development Council (RDC).

Governor Roel Degamo had pointed that since there are 13 cities in Negros Occidental while there are only six in Negros Oriental, their province could always be outvoted.

The proposed block voting would mean that the 13 votes of Negros Occidental will be equivalent to one vote only, and the six votes of Negros Oriental will also be equivalent to one. (TDE)