More priorities; Lacson sets aside NIR’s renaming, prioritizes full implementation 

Posted by watchmen
June 21, 2024
Posted in HEADLINE


Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson has set aside the proposed renaming of the Negros Island Region (NIR) to Negros Island-Siquijor Administrative Region (NISAR), citing more pressing priorities.

“I don’t think that’s the priority now,” Lacson said yesterday.

Lacson said the proposal to change the name of the newly-established region could be considered in the future, but not at this time.

“It’s not a pressing matter. More important now is how to make NIR functional already,” he said.

Lacson emphasized that the current focus should be setting up NIR’s implementing rules and regulations, establishing regional offices, and securing a national budget for 2025.

“The priority now is how to set up different offices, and I think even more important now is to push for a budget for 2025,” he added.

The governor also emphasized the importance of securing a budget for the full implementation of NIR, which he believes will be “fully functional” by next year.

“Right now they are preparing the General Appropriations Act, and so this is the time that we can ask for the budget for NIR,” Lacson said.

“So the best case scenario is in 2025. We already have a budget for NIR. The next best scenario is 2026,” he added.

With an appropriate budget, Lacson believes that NIR will be operational and will effectively serve the needs of its constituents.

Lacson also expressed hopes that NIR will be fully functional soon, not dependent on sharing resources with Western and Central Visayas.

Earlier, Siquijor’s San Juan Mayor Wilfredo Capundag, Jr. proposed renaming NIR as NISAR, stating that it was a fitting recognition of Siquijor’s integration into the region, created through Republic Act (RA) 12000, signed by President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. on June 13.

RA 12000 separates Negros Occidental from Western Visayas, as well as Negros Oriental and Siquijor from Central Visayas.

Capundag said NIR, the 18th region in the country, comprises more than just Negros Occidental and Negros Oriental.

He added that the renaming will avoid the impression that the new region consists of two Negros provinces only.

Meanwhile, Negros Occidental 5th District Congressman Dino Yulo expressed his support for NIR’s renaming.

“We don’t have any problem with the name as long as we can establish our new region,” Yulo said, emphasizing that what’s important for now is that their plans can be carried out.

The establishment of NIR will promote administrative decentralization and strengthen local autonomy, which will accelerate the cultural and social development in the region./JB, WDJ

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