19 barangay chairs snub Surigao City mayor’s address

SURIGAO CITY (MindaNews/25 April) – Saying he failed to deliver basic services to their areas, 19 of the city’s 54 barangay (village) chairpersons did not show up when Mayor Ernesto T. Matugas delivered his State of the City Address (Soca) that cited his accomplishments last year.

Chairperson Christopher Bonite of Barangay Washington said he and some colleagues did not show in sympathy with other villages that were deprived of projects like barangay road maintenance.

Peterson Rosello, chair of Barangay Aurora who also boycotted the event said his area did not receive social services from the city government.

Manuel R. Kong, Matugas’ spokesperson said it was the choice of the 19 barangay heads not to attend the Soca and that the mayor respected their decision.

In his Soca, Matugas cited that the city spent P60.67 million for bridges, roads, seawalls and causeway, day care and health centers, multi-purpose buildings and other structures.

He said the city has appropriated at least 18 million for the special education fund, which covers the honoraria and year-end benefits of teachers.

The city allocated P4.4 million for the city scholarship program that benefited 450 poor but deserving students who enrolled in different short-term technical-vocational and degree courses. Of that number, 47 graduated this year five of whom graduated cum laude and one magna cum laude, he added.

Matugas also cited that the city collected P573 million in revenues last year, an increase of 11.73 percent from the P513.4 million earned in 2013.

He attributed the higher collections to the 24.12-percent increase in business taxes. (Roel N. Catoto/MindaNews)