EDITORIAL: Espino’s 7th SOPA

February 26, 2014 at 7:20 pm Leave a comment


The 7th State of the Province Address (SOPA) of Pangasinan Governor Amado T. Espino Jr. was delivered last February 10 in front of the Capitol, attended by more than 5,000 coming from all walks of life in the province. It was a SOPA that outlined the accomplishments of the provincial government for the year 2013, zeroing in on infrastructure, agriculture, health services, social services, sports development, etc. and the various awards received by Espino’s administration on local governance.
The year 2013, according to Espino, was the ” most trying period” of his Administration and also the year when “Pangasinan’s independence and maturity as a people were put to test.” Those statements somehow alluded to the May 13, 2013 elections when Espino, on his quest for a third term for governorship, was bombarded by his opponents with various issues like the black sand mining in Lingayen, the murder of Infanta Mayor Ruperto Martinez, jueteng operations, etc. to undermine his accomplishments and to thwart off his re-election bid.

But “no amount of distraction has put down every good deeds that the present administration envisioned to accomplish as stated in the vision and mission it has set six and a half years ago,”said the daring Governor Espino. Indeed, the “maturity of the Pangasinenses” has been put to test. Governor Espino defeated his gubernatorial opponent by more than 800,000 votes- the highest margin ever recorded in the history of gubernatorial race in Pangasinan.
This paper, although partly critical of his Administration in the previous years ( which we believe part of the press freedom to balance news and information), congratulates Governor Espino and his Administration on the development gains he garnered in governing Pangasinan, which have been providing economic changes in the lives of 2.7 million Pangasinenses.
We salute Governor Espino and his administration on the following accomplishments:
On poverty alleviation program, Pangasinan registered an impressive 9.5% decline in poverty incidence outpacing the national poverty rate posted only a minimal 1.1% decrease from 2006 to 2012.
The province’s consumer index for 2013 was 123.3 which is lower than Region I’s 125.
This means that Pangasinenses buy more inside the province compared to those living outside Pangasinan.

In 2013, the province recorded also an inflation rate of 1.5 which is lower than the 1.9 in Region I and much lower than the Philippines 3.2. The purchasing power of the peso in 2013 was measured at 0.81 which is slightly higher than the 0.80 recorded for Region I but a lot higher than the national figure at 0.76.

The cited economic indicators just proved that the province’s economy is stable and progressing, thus the awards and accolades that Pangasinan received particularly the six Hall of Fame awards given by regional and national agencies could not be underestimated.

Governor Espino said: “The province steadily emerged from a prolonged state of dormancy to become the best performing province in Region 1 and one of the top performing provinces in the country.” We give a toast to that.

However, there are still two years for us to watch the Espino administration. Could he sustain the economic gains prevailing now in the province? Do the achievements in various development sectors trickle down to the masses and the gains be felt by the majority of the Pangasineses?

As of the moment, we pray that Governor Espino and his administration should not rest on the present laurels they reaped. We hope that they will work harder and make Pangasinan ” the best place to invest, to work, to live and to raise a family”.

By that time, Pangasinenses could not ask for more.

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Entry filed under: News.

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