"I enjoined everyone, all of you [past and present employees], let us all strive to make Bacolod City great again. Let us make sure that all of us will be relevant in public service."

This was underscored by Bacolod City Mayor Alfredo Abelardo Benitez during his first flag raising ceremony with the city employees and officials at the Bacolod City Government Center (BCGC) yesterday, July 4.

Benitez said they are conducting a flag raising ceremony every Monday, a time to give respect to the Philippine flag and also to their works.

"When we work, think about [the fact] that we are here to serve the people. We are here as government employees or elected officials because the people believe that you will serve to the best of your ability," he added.

As the newly installed city mayor, Benitez has asked the understanding and patience of the department heads on how things work in the city.

"But being new to the job doesn't mean that we will not be effective. Let us start fresh or reset the button again because maybe we have forgotten the basic mandates of our offices," he told them.

He said that he will be leading the city based on performance guided by the output, the results, not by personal loyalty.

"We will make sure that those who are doing their jobs or performing well will be given attention," he added.

After the flag raising ceremony, the city mayor held a meeting with the department heads at the MassKara Hall.

Benitez has asked the department heads to submit their wish lists or their plans within their offices to improve their services for the people.

The mayor said that he will hold a clustered meeting with the department heads for this whole week.

He said he already ordered a memorandum that all department heads should report to their mother unit or the offices where they are assigned.

After his meeting, the mayor then inspected all the offices at the BCGC including those of the city councilors and Vice Mayor El Cid Familiaran.*

Among the problems he noted were malfunctioned air condition units in some of these offices.*