FORMER Candaba mayor Jerry L. Pelayo is pushing for the revival of the popular "Ibon-Ebon” festival which he started on February 1, 2008 when he was the mayor.
Pelayo, who has retired from politics, told members of the Capampangan in Media, Inc. (CAMI) on Friday, March 22, that the restoration of what was once a huge tourist attraction is good for Pampanga.
"The festival was not only a local or national event but was an international one because it drew tourists, especially bird watchers from different countries," he said.
The festival was abandoned by his successor, Mayor Rene Maglanque, when Pelayo completed his three terms as mayor in 2013.
"The event was even featured in an in-flight magazine of the Philippine Airlines and put Pampanga on the global map as tourist destination," Pelayo said.
He said that he regretted that the provincial government did not pick up the event after the municipal government dropped it.
Pelayo, however, clarified that he harbors no bad feelings towards the provincial government for its failure to continue the festival which was held February every year.
Meanwhile, Pelayo fully supports Governor Lilia G. Pineda in her candidacy for vice-governor of the province.
"I have always been supportive of Nanay and the Pinedas," he said.
Pelayo said he will vote for governor someone who will promise to address the province's problems on garbage, agriculture and other needs of Kapampangans.
"The next governor should have the political will to do so," he stressed.
Pelayo is advocating for a modern and industrialized agriculture and fishery industry that is sustainable, competitive and resilient.
He said his advocacy is consistent with megalopolis project initiated by former President and now House Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and Governor Pineda.
Pelayo hinted at corruption as one reason for the poor performance of the agricultural sector. (NCS)