AMID the current hard times due to the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic and the increase in fuel prices, Negros Occidental congressmen committed to a closer partnership and coordination with Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson.

At the sidelines of the oathtaking ceremony of Lacson and other provincial officials on Saturday, June 25, Third District Representative Francisco Benitez expressed optimism that with the leadership of Lacson, everything will be put in place including the recovery plan.

Benitez said that Lacson, particularly, should focus on food security and digital transformation for a more diversified kind of economy.

"We still have problems with energy and issues in peace and order (and) I think that's going to be addressed quite strongly by the governor in his next term,” Benitez said.

He added that they are hoping for Negros Occidental to remain relatively peaceful and prosperous as it moves up in its trajectory with nicer and better things on the horizon.

Benitez also said the province should move towards stronger energy sufficiency, a stronger tourism and greater moves towards perhaps a diversification of our economy.

"I'm sure the governor has shown in his term his competence in leading us forward," the congressman said.

For returning Sixth District Representative Mercedes Alvarez, she hopes that they continue the same partnership and coordination with the national government, provincial government and local government units in the delivery of programs and projects.

Former vice governor and now Fifth District Representative Emilio Yulo III said he is looking forward to working together with the provincial government, particularly in the present thrust of the national government on agriculture.

"It is imperative and important to us to align all programs with the national government," Yulo said.

The three congressmen of Negros Occidental attended the inauguration and oathtaking of provincial government officials led by Lacson at the Provincial Capitol grounds on Saturday, June 25.

Second District Representative-elect Alfredo "Thirdy" Marañon III was also present at the inauguration.