One more try for capitol execs as city gov’t consultants

By Dolly Yasa

BACOLOD City – Mayor Alfredo “Albee” Benitez said that he will resubmit to the Sangguniang Panlungsod his request for authority to hire three provincial government executives as consultants of the city government.

This, after the Sangguniang Panlungsod only approved last week the proposed consultancy of Atty. Valerie Ann Hollero for health insurance and healthcare.

Earlier, Benitez asked the City Council for an authority to tap Atty. Rayftando Diaz II as consultant for Administrative Matters and Systems Review; Atty. Valerie Ann Hollero as consultant for Health Insurance and Health care; Dr. Mary Ann Maestral as consultant for Health and Hospital Concerns; and Lucille Gelvolea as consultant for Special Projects and Economic affairs.

Councilor Al Victor Espino,  chairman of the SP Committee on Good Government suggested that instead of a consultancy agreement, the city can strike a memorandum of understanding or memorandum of agreement for bilateral relations with the Negros Occidental provincial government.

Espino cited that Bacolod City is a highly urbanized city and no longer part of the province, thus they are of equal footing.

But Benitez said there is no need for a bilateral agreement between the city and provincial governments as regards the consultancy issue.

The mayor said his working relationship with Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson “goes beyond any documentation.”

He added that “the trust between us is beyond any formalities involved. We have agreed that it is not necessary to put it on paper because of the things that we have been doing before. So we deem it not necessary to formalize the matter.”

Diaz is currently the Provincial Administrator, Gelvolea is the Economic Enterprise Development Department (EEDD) head while Maestral is Chief of Hospital of Teresita L. Jalandoni Provincial Hospital in Silay City.

When asked for his reaction, Diaz said “Mayor Albee will take care of it, wala man kaso, let us just be patient, Mayor Albee knows what he is doing and we hope our allies will help sa  gusto sang aton mayor.”

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