“This might be your last session as the vice governor,” Governor Solon told Pacquiao during the adjournment sine die of the 8th Sangguniang Panlalawigan, “but I truly believe in my heart that in the future, you’ll be returning in some other capacity.”
Pacquiao however said relinquishing her seat as presiding officer of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan would not mean totally renouncing public engagements since her husband, the current lone district representative of Sarangani, Manny Pacquiao, is now a Senator-elect.
In her speech during the adjournment sine die of the Sanggunian, Vice Governor Pacquiao enumerated remarkable legislations which she said have all redounded to the advantage of Sarangans.
The 428 resolutions and 71 ordinances which the SP legislated within three years have backed up various programs of the provincial government like “hospital enhancement, water systems, employee’s benefits, acquisition of new heavy equipment, family care, office advancement, assistance to various government and non-government organizations and all other concerns for the welfare of Sarangans.”
Among these, she underscored ordinances on the selection of the mandatory indigenous people’s representative in the Sanggunian, eradicating open defecation in communities, establishing breastfeeding stations in government workplaces, and establishment for systems on effective maternal newborn child health and nutrition implementation.
Being endorsed by World Bank-Water and Sanitation Program as the ambassadress for sanitation, Vice Governor Pacquiao has been successful in her advocacy to eliminate open defecation.
Reportedly, Negros Oriental and Sultan Kudarat have already studied the vice governor’s initiative dubbed as “Jinkeenation” for replication in their provinces.
Vice Governor Pacquiao also mentioned in her speech that her role as presiding officer had given her “unique opportunity to understand better what it is that makes our democratic form of government work.”
She recalled members of the SP had clashed in discussions and debates over issues but it did always redound to “a conclusion which benefits the people.”
She thanked her colleagues in the Sanggunian for the privilege, cooperation and support and she would be leaving them behind the maxim Salus Populi Est Suprema Lex or the welfare of the people - not ours - is the supreme law as their guiding tenet in their political service.
All the members of the SP, as well, responded in deep gratitude for all the contributions Vice Governor Pacquiao had done for the province. The SP held its adjournment sine die where the vice governor and board members delivered their respective parting speeches. (Beverly C. Paoyon/ SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)