ZAMBOANGA City Mayor Celso Lobregat said Thursday he is hopeful that the city will get more support from the National Government under the leadership of President Benigno Simeon Aquino III.

Lobregat, at the same time, expressed hopes that Zamboanga City can get back the regional center, which has been transferred to Pagadian City, the capital of Zamboanga del Sur.

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Lobregat also hopes Zamboanga City will not be included in any interim peace deals that would be forged if and when the government resumes the peace talks with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

"Our hopes are high. We hope that with President Aquino, we can get the regional center back and we hope that in terms of the peace process we will not be included in any interim peace deals. We also hope that we will get more projects than what we got during the previous administration," Lobregat said.

In a recent visit to Zamboanga, the President's sisters -- Viel Dee and Kris Arroyo-Yap -- vowed to support and assist Zamboanga City as a show of gratitude for this city's help and support to their brother during the campaign period.

The Aquino sisters have conducted an outreach activity with assistance from the office of district I Congresswoman Ma. Isabelle Climaco-Salazar as a show of appreciation to Zamboangueños for their support to Aquino's candidacy during the campaign period.

The Aquino sisters distributed last June 21 school supplies to school children at the Sta. Maria and Tetuan Elementary Schools.

Lobregat said the return of the regional center to Zamboanga City and several other issues are among the things that the City Government of Zamboanga will be pushing for with the administration of Aquino.

Lobregat said it was the commitment of President Aquino during the campaign period to help Zamboanga City in its quest for the return of the regional center to Zamboanga.

He said Aquino is aware of the fact that the regional center was transferred to Pagadian City from Zamboanga mainly because of political reasons.

Lobregat hinted that the alliance of Salazar with the Liberal Party (LP) will augur well for Zamboanga City.

Lobregat meanwhile said the new president should be given a lot of time to learn the ropes.

The president himself has said that the Filipinos should not expect the new administration to solve all problems right away, Lobregat noted. (Bong Garcia)