NAGA City – An overwhelming majority vote in the House of Representative Wednesday (August 3) favored House Bill 4820, otherwise known as “An Act Creating the new province of Nueva Camarines”.
A total of 229 members of the lower house favored the proposition, while only one voted against it, confirmed by no less than Camarines Sur Governor LRay Villafuerte’s father, 3rd District Congressman Luis Villafuerte in an interview.
The bill was authored by 4th District Congressman Noli Fuentebella who believes that the creation of a new province will give its constituents a positive stance in terms of progress and development.
He also reiterated that the new Internal Revenue allotment that will be given to the new province will give an advantageous favor to the concerned local government units.
With the accepted wisdom on the positive effect of the said proposition, three out of the five Camarines congressmen, with the exemption of Fuentebella as the main author, enlisted themselves as co-authors of the House Bill. It includes Congressmen Rolando “Nonoy” Andaya, Diosdado “Dato” Arroyo, and Luis Villafuerte of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Districts respectively. Only 5th District Congressman Salvio Fortuno voted against it.
While the bill was being heard in Congress, various consultations had been also set in place to give Camarinenses an overview of what they will gain out of the partition or creation of another province.
Mr. Emil Saavedra, secretary general of the various summit held in strategic venues in Camarines Sur said that every one has the right to get a grasp of what the Bill is all about.
The first summit was held in Ateneo de Naga University on May 21 was organized by the MassCom Arts and Affairs and the Ateneo de Naga Institute of Politics. Attendees include lawyers, university professors, media practitioners, professionals and other stakeholders.
The second summit was done in Iriga City in coordination with the local government of Iriga City thru their Mayor, Hon. Madelaine Alfelor-Gazmen. It was held at the University of Saint Anthony (USANT) amphitheatre on June 27.
Both the proponent, Fuentebella and the one opposing it, Governor Villafuerte were given an opportunity to explain their sentiments on the said proposition.
After all the debates, the ultimate decision will still lie in the hands of every Camarinense who will give their final verdict on the fate of House Bill 4820 once a referendum is already in place. (Lizel S. Macatangay)