MAASIN CITY – Governor Damian Mercado expressed his hope that the splitting of Southern Leyte will result to economic benefits to the province.
Mercado, who just won another fresh term during the May 13 midterm elections, was referring to the creation of another congressional district of the province which was principally authored by his brother, Rep. Roger Mercado.
The governor said that with two congressional districts, Southern Leyte could expect more funding from the national government.
Under Republic Act 11198, Southern Leyte’s 17 towns and Maasin City were divided into two congressional districts.
The first district is comprised of the capital Maasin City, and the towns of Macrohon, Padre Burgos, Malitbog, Tomas Oppus, Bontoc and the island town of Limasawa.
The towns of Sogod, Libagon, Liloan, San Francisco, Pintuyan, San Ricardo, Saint Bernard, Anahawan, San Juan, Hinundayan, Hinunangan, and Silago make up the second district.
The governor was also quick to say that the division of the province into two congressional district is not politically-motivated.
“The move to divide the province has nothing to do with politics because our main purpose was to ensure that more projects will come to help and benefits the residents of Southern Leyte,” Mercado added.
He added that once they have two representatives, these officials will now have enough time to visit all 500 barangays of the province.
At present, Rep. Mercado is on hold-capacity as representative of Southern Leyte in the Lower House.
“They say that an election will be held this November,” Gov. Mercado disclosed.
Southern Leyte province plays an important role in the inter-island transportation system of the country, with its two towns, Liloan and San Ricardo as main entry and exit point for roll-on, roll-off going to Mindanao Island.
An agricultural province, Southern Leyte is a top coconut and abaca fiber producer in the region. (ROEL T. AMAZONA)