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Chiz endorses Bong Go; more projects seen to pour in Bicol

IMMINENT VICTORY. Bong Go at the grand proclamation rally of ‘Sorsogon First’, led by Senator Chiz Escudero, now running for Provincial Governor of Sorsogon.

SORSOGON CITY --- The senatorial bid of former Special Assistant to the President and 2019 senatorial candidate Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go received a major boost Sunday after he was formally endorsed by outgoing senator and now gubernatorial candidate Francis “Chiz” Escudero.

Go held a motorcade in Sorsogon City, starting from Sorsogon National High School in Barangay Al Cogon, traversing several other barangays in the city and a public market before winding up at the residence of Escudero who is running for governor of the province.

The highly popular Escudero ran for vice president in the 2016 elections under the banner of the Nationalist People’s Coalition

(NPC), the second-largest political party in the country. NPC has allied itself with the ruling Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) of President Rodrigo Duterte.

The former SAP also expressed his gratitude to the people and officials of Sorsogon for the warm reception they had given him.

“Nakakataba ng puso, nakawala ng pagod pag nakikita mong maraming sumusuporta sa iyo katulad ngayon at saan man kami pumupunta ay mainit ang pagtanggap sa amin,” Go said in an ambush interview. Go said that whether or not he will be elected to the Senate he would back projects for the development of the province and the region. He noted that the Duterte administration has already lined up several projects that would benefit the people of Sorsogon.

“Meron sa ngayon ang ating national government, meron tayong ginagawang PNR South Long-Haul railroad at Samar-Sorsogon (bridge) linkage at marami pa pong iba sa ilalim ng ‘Build, Build, Build’ program ng Pangulo,” Go pointed out.

The PNR South Long-Haul is a P175.3B, 639-km project that will traverse Manila, Laguna, Batangas, Quezon, Camarines Sur, Albay, and Sorsogon.

On the other hand, the Luzon-Sorsogon-Samar link bridge will cost P375B. Approved by the NEDA in August 2018, it would consist of an 18.2-km four-lane, cable-stayed bridge to connect Samar to the main island of Luzon (Allen-Matnog).

Go stressed that Duterte does not allow politics to be part of the consideration of proposed infrastructure projects.

“Alam n’yo si Pangulong Duterte pantay-pantay lahat ng tingin niya sa mga rehiyon, regardless of political affiliation kung sino man ang nandidiyan. Ang importante po ay tuloy-tuloy po ang mga proyekto at progress sa lugar na iyon lalong lalo na po sa infrastructure para mapabilis yung transportation of goods,” Go stressed.

“Damihan natin ang infrastructure project dito para matapos na rin ang insurgency dito, para yung mga goods po mapabilis yung transportasyon. So rest assured po, huwag kayong mag-alala dito sa Sorsogon, sa Region 5, sa mga proyekto ni Pangulong Duterte, marami pong nakalaan dito,” Go said during a press briefing.

After the motorcade, Go joined officials of the province for lunch and fellowship, also taking the opportunity to hear their concerns and also explain his legislative agenda. He also assured the local officials that they can always rely on him to bring their concerns before President Duterte.

“Asahan n’yo po, patuloy ninyo akong magiging tulay kay Pangulong Duterte. Pangako ko sa taong bayan ipagpapatuloy ko yung pagbabagong nasimulan ni Pangulong Duterte,” Go said.

In particular, Go said he would continue President Duterte’s campaign against criminality, corruption, and illegal drugs.

“Gusto ko rin pong i-improve yung medical services throughout the country, palawakin itong Malasakit Centers, at isabatas ito pagdating ng panahon,” he added.

A program of the Duterte administration based on Go’s idea, the Malasakit Center makes it easier and faster for indigent patients to avail of medical and financial assistance from the government by bringing together in one room all concerned government agencies such as the DOH, DSWD, PCSO and Philhealth. He noted that currently there are 34 Malasakit Centers serving various areas of the country, including one in Legazpi City which is among the first batch of Malasakit Centers launched.

“Sana po magkakaroon din po dito sa Sorsogon. Alam ko kailangan ng Sorsogon ng Malasakit Center kasi malayo rin yung Legazpi---it’s one-and-a-half-hour away from Sorsogon. So bigyan din po natin ng Malasakit Center dito pagdating ng panahon,” Go said.

Go’s legislative priorities also include programs for agriculture, education, housing, long-term sports development, localized peace talks, barangay welfare, fire protection and prevention, creation of a Department of OFW and improved benefits for senior citizens.

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