Isko Moreno: Reviving Manila won’t be a ‘walk in Rizal Park’

By Erma Edera

After a three-year hiatus from politics, actor-politician Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso took his oath as mayor of Manila Sunday.

Newly-elected Manila Mayor Isko Moreno during his oath-taking at Manila City Hall Sunday, June 30, 2019. (ALI VICOY / MANILA BULLETIN)
Newly-elected Manila Mayor Isko Moreno during his oath-taking at Manila City Hall Sunday, June 30, 2019. (ALI VICOY / MANILA BULLETIN)

Domagoso, 44, was sworn in by Chief Justice Lucas Bersamin as the city’s 27th mayor at the Bulwagang Katipunan in the Manila City Hall.

Bersamin also gave the oath of office to Domagoso’s running mate, re-elected Maria Sheilah “Honey” Lacuna-Pangan.

Domagoso said he cannot fulfill all his promises alone in his three-year term.

“I wish I could tell you, that it will all be roses in the next three years. But in reality it will not be a walk in Rizal Park. If Manila, like Rome, was not built in one day, fixing it will require more than one term,” he said on his 45-minute inaugural speech.

“I have told you before that I will start the first hour of my first day as Mayor with honor, honesty, and trans¬parency,” he added.
The new mayor said he still could not believe he was elected as mayor of Manila.

“Alam niyo ang kwento ng buhay ko. Basurero. Tindero. Squatter. Gutom. Mahirap. Ni sa panaginip ng marami ‘di ninyo naisip na maluklok ako sa pwestong ito. Huwag kayong mag-alala hindi pa rin ako makapaniwala,” he said.

“Ang isang basurero pwede palang maging alkalde ng Maynila. It’s a mo¬ment for every citizens of Manila. Kasi para sa kanila to hindi naman para sa amin,” he added.

He lined up his plans for the city.

“We will use the power of technol¬ogy and the reach of social media to crowdsource ideas and implement best practices, punish bad behavior, and re¬ward good performance,” he said.

He also promised to end the tyranny in the city’s streets. “The rule of law must prevail and the law of the jungle in our streets must end. Tyranny in our streets must end. We will manage traffic systematically,” he said.

The new mayor also ordered two city government funded schools, Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila and Universidad de Manila, to form an Institute of Transportation and Traffic Management to reduce traffic conges¬tion in Manila.

He also plans to build a Manila-Wide MonoRail System, o Manila Sky Shuttle, a private-government ownership.

In rebooting Manila to make it more attractive to foreign and domestic in¬vestments, Domagoso said he will turn to its most precious resource — the young people of Manila.

To boost Manila’s tourism, he vowed to rebuild the love of Manileños for the parks and plazas and he will declare 2021 as Visit Manila Year.

Manila Public Information Office Chief Julius Leonen said outgoing mayor Joseph Estrada and former Mayor Alfredo Lim were invited to the inauguration but did not attend.

Leonen said Domagoso will deliver his first state of the city address on Mon¬day, after the flag raising ceremony.

Domagoso won over Estrada by a landslide of close to 150,000 votes.

Other news mayor in Metro Manila were sworn in Sunday.

In San Juan City, the father-and-son tandem of San Juan City Mayor Francis and Congressman Ronny Zamora took their oath.

Witnessed by their family, city of¬ficials, guests and supporters, Francis and Ronny were sworn into office by Senator Panfilo Lacson at Filoil Flying V Arena.

“Malaking bagay na magkakampi ang mayor at ang congressman (It is a big thing that the mayor and the congressman are allies),” Francis said in his speech.

“Hindi lamang magkakampi, mag- ama pa,” he added.

The younger Zamora is the first San Juan mayor who is not a member of the Ejercito-Estrada clan since former senator and San Juan Mayor Jinggoy Estrada was elected into of¬fice in 1992.

Francis defeated Jinggoy’s daugh¬ter, former Vice Mayor Janella Ejercito Estrada in the May elections.

This will be the last term as the representative of the city’s lone district of the elder Zamora, who according to Francis, will retire from politics when his term ends in 2022.

READ MORE: San Juan Mayor Francis excited to work with Pa Ronny

In Quezon City, Mayor Joy Belmonte and the other newly elected city officials were sworn in by Supreme Court Asso¬ciate Justice Estela M. Perlas-Bernabe in simple rites at the ABS-CBN Tent, Vertis North.

In her inaugural speech, Belmonte vowed to implement some ordinance-based and doable programs during the first 100 days of in office.

She mentioned the improvement of housing social service, education and health projects.

Belmonte vowed to act on the needs of the 188,549 informal settler families living in danger zones, open spaces and private properties in the city.

The 36 Bistekvilles, thee socialized housing project of her predecessor Her¬bert Bautista, have served only 3,415 families which is not even one percent of the ISF population, she said.

“While we cannot build housing overnight or even in 100 days we will start by re-structuring the Housing, Commercial Development and Resettlement Departmentto provide free technical services and hasten the pro¬cesses involved in land tenureship and housing,’’ Belmonte said.

She also proposed four initiatives that would further improve the delivery of public service to the people.

Those who also took their oath of office were Vice Mayor Gian Sotto, Congressmen Onyx Crisologo, Precious Hipolito-Castelo, Allan Benedict Reyes, Jesus Manuel Suntay, Alfred Vargas and Kit Belmonte and members of the sixth districts of the city council.

READ MORE: Belmonte takes oath as QC mayor, enumerates priority projects

In Pasig City, Vico Sotto took his oath as the new mayor.

Sotto was sworn in by Commission on Audit Chairperson Michael Agui¬naldo, with his parents Vic Sotto and Coney Reyes by his side.

The 30-year-old Sotto toppled the 27-year political rule of the Eusebio clan in Pasig after he handily defeated Bobby Eusebio last May.

Pasig, one of the richest cities in the country, did not have any other mayor outside the Eusebio clan since Vicente Eusebio was elected mayor in 1992.

Although Sotto was considered an underdog, he had the advantage of hav¬ing a high-profile surname and parents who are both icons in show business.

He also has the support of his uncle, Senate President Vicente Sotto III.

In an interview with reporters after the inauguration, Sotto called for unity. “Panahon na para magkaisa. Panahon na para mag move forward tayo (It’s time to unite. It’s time for us to move forward),” he said.

READ MORE: Vico Sotto sworn in as Pasig mayor

Aside from Sotto, Congressman Roman Romulo also took his oath, which was presided over by his sister Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat.

Vice Mayor Iyo Caruncho Bernardo, who ran under the ticket of Eusebio, also sworn into office by Pasig City Regional Trial Court Executive Judge Danilo Cruz. Sotto did not field a candidate for the vice mayoralty position.

Despite their differences, Sotto thanked the Eusebio family for their contributions to the city. (With Jhon Aldrin Casinas and Chito Chavez)