By: Emme Rose Santiagudo
‘PLEASE serve our people well’.
This was the only message uttered by outgoing Mayor Jose Espinosa to City Hall employees as he attended his last flag ceremony on June 24, 2019.
Espinosa will be stepping down on June 30 after serving for more than one year as city mayor.
On July 1, 2019, the new administration headed by his brother-in-law, Iloilo City mayor-elect and lone district Rep. Jerry Treñas, will take over the City Hall after a landslide win against Espinosa in the May 13 elections.
In an interview after the flag ceremony, Espinosa took pride in his accomplishments during his term.
According to Espinosa, his greatest accomplishment was removing the “shabulized” tagline of Iloilo City.
“Isa gid na kuhaan gid kag ang ginapadayaw amo ang pagdula sang tagline nga ‘Iloilo as a shabulized city’, gindula ta gid na kag as proof sina nakakuha kita awards because of our anti-drug campaign,” he said.
The outgoing mayor took pride in the anti-drug campaign of the city government during his term as well as his efforts to maintain the peace and order in the city.
“Waay gid sang mga drug laboratories diri sa siyudad nga gahimo shabu. Kag ang mga pumuluyo kabalo kamo nga dako gid ang nacontribute ta para magnami ang peace and order sa siyudad and subong wala na mga crimes like holdups, snatching, akyat-bahay and other crimes related sa drugs,” he said.
He emphasized that peace and order propelled the progress and development in the city.
“Isa gid na ginpadayaw naton kag ako ya gapati ko ang siyudad sang Iloilo ga-amo ni subong, gaprogresibo tungod man sang aton kampanya sa anti-criminality, anti-corruption and anti-drugs. Kalabanan ginapamangkot sang mga businessmen is how the peace and order in your city is,” he said.
Espinosa said he only did his best to serve the public.
“Ako ya wala ko ya may ginhimo nga iban kundi serbisyo gid lang, napatinlo naton ang mga plazas, nakuha ta ang mga ukay-ukay kag subong may mga playgrounds kita para sa mga kabataan kag aton iban na programa like Pagulikid.
Even outside the public office, Espinosa assured that he will be serving the people in his own private capacity.
“Sa pumuluyo kita ya sa ginhambal ko na politicians come and go, tinuon ta naman mag-go so ari lang kita diri kag we will be serving our people in our private capacity kag maglibot-libot kita sa mga kabarangayan gihapon kag mapasalamat sa mga grupo naton,” he said.
The outgoing mayor also has a message to his brother-in-law and gave indefinite statements on his possible comeback to the political scene.
“Sa incoming (administration), God speed, imo na na ya call, kag ako ya, I will just be around. We politicians, come and go, may ara gabalik, kita may edad edad naman, so subong ma-observe anay kita sang panginmanwa and sa sunod nga election lantawon ta kung mapartisipar pa ta,” Espinosa said.