The solon files bill to create another district
ORAS, Eastern Samar– Rep. Marcelino Libanan of the 4Ps party-list group expressed his optimism that his bill splitting into two the current lone congressional district of Eastern Samar will be realized.
Libanan, the current House minority floor leader, said that it’s high time since the province composed of Borongan City and 22 towns is big an area to have just one congressional representative.
His bill, contained under House Bill 3647, was recently approved by the committee on local governments.
According to Libanan, who once served the lone congressional district of the province from 1988 to 2007, of the 19 similar measures pending in the Lower House, he is confident that his measure will be first or among those to be approved.
He admitted that for his measure to be approved realized lies in the hands of House Speaker and Leyte Rep. Martin Romualdez and President Ferdinand Marcos.
“If there is such a measure to be approved under the 19th Congress, I am confident that my bill will be given the priority me being the minority floor leader,” Libanan said in an interview Tuesday (April 11) where he lead the groundbreaking of a farm-to-market road covering eight villages of this town.
Libanan lamented that despite of having a small coverage, Southern Leyte, which has 19 towns and the city of Maasin, has now two congressional districts.
The creation of two congressional districts for Southern Leyte came into effect in 2019.
“I have filed a similar bill during the 13th Congress but was not approved,” he said.
Libanan, which he refiled a similar measure in August 2022, said that there is a need to break into two the lone congressional district of the province for the reason it covers 597 barangays, which he said is the biggest in the country for a congressional district.
Also, having another congressman will mean additional benefits for the province in terms of projects.
The current post is being held by Rep. Ma. Fe Abunda.
Libanan did not say if he will run for a congressional seat under the proposed district.
Under his measure, the first congressional district will be composed of Borongan City and the municipalities of Arteche, Can-vid, Dolores, Jipapad, Maslog, Oras, San Julian, San Policarpo, Sulat, and Taft with a combined population of more than 270,600.
Meantime, the towns of Balangiga, Balangkayan, Gen. MacArthur, Giporlos, Guiuan, Hernani, Lawaan, Llorente, Maydolong, Mercedes, Quinapondan, and Salcedo will compose the proposed second congressional district which has a combine of over 206,400 population.
If approved, of the six provinces of Eastern Visayas, it will leave only Biliran to have a lone congressional district.
(JOEY A. GABIETA)