Last Thursday morning, February 12, 2009, General Santos City Mayor Pedro B. Acharon, Jr. presented his administration’s accomplishments for 2008 and his blueprint for the remainder of his term which ends in 2010 in front of the members of the City Council including Vice Mayor Florentina Congson at their SP Hall, a few minutes after their weekly session opened.
The mayor’s guests, representing the different local and national government agencies and multi-sectoral representatives came trickling in as early as 8:00am and immediately filled the newly-renovated Sangguniang Panlungsod Hall.
The 15 members of the City Council were all accounted for including ABC (Association of Barangay Captains) President Honorable Lourdes Casabuena and Sangguniang Kabataan Federation President Honorable Jane Calunsag. Since not everyone could not be accommodated inside the SP Hall, other guests were seated at the pathway leading to the stairs at the lobby where an overhead projector was mounted.
At exactly 8:45am, the mayor arrived with his wife Dr. Rose, his daughter Joahanna and his brothers Honesto and Yolando and entered the session hall right after the singing of the National Anthem to a warm applause.
Councilors (from left) Dom Lagare, Oco and Jong Gonzales listen in rapt attention to City Mayor Acharon’s SOCA whil behind them is the Mayor’s daughter Joahanna, wife, Dr. Rose and brother Engineer Honesto “Butch” Acharon.
The Mayor’s SOCA was full of optimism amidst the global crisis expected to hit the Philippines this year with him saying that the local government is “ready and prepared to cushion the impact” while asking the city council to craft investment policies “that are responsive and friendly to micro-enterprises,” a measure meant to help turn homecoming OFW’s to entrepreneurs.
Inside the media room (Vice Mayor’s Conference room) where ABS-CBN and SkyCable set up their equipment for the SOCA’s live airing, other media folks also prepared their phone patch units. From left are DXDX’s Lito, Brigada’s Ernie Gabonada, UMBN’s Chito San Pedro and RPN’s Faith Barcelona.
Mayor Acharon also cited the city’s gains in terms of the economy, where earnings of P651 million were realized, thanks in part to GenSan’s onte-town, one-product processors; where new businesses contricuted P1.4 billion, generating more than 4,000 jobs. One of this is the Robinsons Land Corporation which earmarked P445 million for a new mall. Also included are the KCC Property Holdings, Inc.a t P350 million and Mabuhay IT. Park with P37 million, Nanhai Food Industries at P15 million and Atoco Philippines Trading, Inc. with P15 million.
All together now. (Sitting from left) Councilors Nep-nep Natividad, Meggie Santos, Mayor Jun Acharon, Vice Mayor Flor Congson, SK Federation Chair Jane Calunsag and ABC Prexy Lulu Casabuena. (Standing from left) Councilors Monching Milleza, Dom Lagare, Jong Gonzales, Dante Vicente, Boyet Leyson, Richard Atendido, Orly Oco, Odjok Acharon, Jun Avila and Bing Dinopol
For the tuna sector, local processors serving the local market increased by 35% while those distributing nationwide went up by 50% and exporters by 76%. A P5.3 million tuna laboratory was established inside the Fishport Complex, managed by Philexport.
The First Couple with ABC President Councilor Lulu Casabuena
Other than his administration’s gains last year, Mayor Acharon also launched 2009 as the Year of Legacy while adopting “Magandang GenSan” as the new city brand, which will be its mark of distinction and its icon, an icon of excellence.
“Magandang GenSan, as in our vision statement, will be a city where fellow Generals create opportunities for each other and protect each other’s well-being, rejoice in each other’s triumphs and support in each other’s nedds and interests,” he explained.
“The Year of Legacy will be more than tangible things like infrastructure and properties, money or resources. The legacy that I envision is the legacy of partnership and cooperation, the legacy of accountable democracy, and the legacy of excellent service to the Generals,” he continued.
For more of Mayor Jun Acharon’s State of the City Address, please click here for the transcript—-> soca.