On his first session as a member of the 15th Sangguniang Panlungsod, Tuesday, city councilor Japal G. Guiani, III already hinted the city council about his plans on updating several laws that are still being implemented and followed in Cotabato City up to this day despite being crafted more than a decade ago.
He said these outdated laws must already be amended or repealed in order to be more responsive to the present needs of the city. One of these is the Market Code of the city. Collection fees must be updated and new rules and regulations must be imposed. Another outdated ordinance is the city's Traffic Code.
City Mayor Atty. Frances Cynthia Guiani-Sayadi has already promised to amend the Traffic laws of the city considering that its population is getting bigger by the day. And as of today, our legislators are already looking into each section of the code and study the amendments that must be done. Once the new Traffic Code is passed, it will be strictly implemented and stiff penalties will be charged to violators. Councilor Guiani further said he will make sure that all the amendments that will be done will be responsive to the current needs of the city.
"We do not want to revert to or to be classified as a third class city. Thus, like all other leading cities in the country, we need to pass local ordinances that are more relevant to the needs of the changing times", Guiani added.
With the rapid development that Cotabato City is now experiencing, the city council must be able to cope and gear up towards enacting laws that will be conducive to the growth of the city's economy. In his inaugural speech, he has also enjoined the participation of all Cotabateños in the process of law making. He emphasized on the virtue of democracy and urged all of Cotabato City's constituents to play an active role in the enactment of ordinances and other regulations.
He also reminded his fellow legislators of the need to conduct a series of consultations and public hearings before the passage of any ordinance that will affect the welfare of the public.
"It is our mandate as a legislator to engage in participative governance as enshrined under the Local Government Code", he said.
Being the only son of our late city mayor Japal J. Guiani, Jr., Jayjay, as he is fondly called by his family and friends, has grown up looking up to his father and admiring his commitment to public service. Though a novice in politics, he said he has been guided and mentored by the example that his father has shown when it comes to caring for the welfare and upholding the rights of the people of Cotabato City.