Saturday, November 8, 2008

Division of Quezon

Clergy Man denounced by the advocacy group opposing splitting of Quezon

Chelle Zoleta

Lucena City-----the Catholic Bishop of Lucena City was denounced by the advocacy group opposing the creation of Quezon Del Sur in connection to his position as a clergy man and self view to the said division of the province.

Hobart Dator Jr., President of Save Quezon Province Movement (SQPM) and a former Board Member criticized Bishop Emilio Marquez who openly expressed his desire for a political division asap which he often said in his homily every Sunday and stating it will give chance for development to the province 3rd and 4th Districts.

“Why don’t the good bishops just stick to his job as a shepherd to his flock? Why would he interfere in purely political issue like the division of Quezon province which is beyond his duty and capacity as a religious and spiritual leader?” asked Dator who added that what Bishop Marquez did smacks of ecclesiastical dogmatism and imposing his view on the hapless parishioner of Quezon.

Republic Act 9495 proposed that the province 1st and 2nd District be made Quezon del Norte with Lucena City as its capital, and 3rd, 4th districts to be under Quezon del Sur, with Gumaca town as capital.

It was authored by then 1st district Congressman, now Governor Rafael P. Nantes and congressmen Proceso Alcala of the 2nd district, Danilo Suarez of the 3rd District; and Lorenzo Tanada III of the 4th District.

The sheer physical size of the province consisting of 870, 000 hectares, prompted the four proponents to initiate a law that would divide the province to make governance more effective and accessible to the people, especially for the island municipalities.

A plebiscite looms expectedly on December 6, after the law’s national and local publication and with the Department of Budget releasing 38 million to the Commission on Election (COMELEC) to fund the conduct of the plebiscite which would ask the Quezon voters if they favoured the splitting of Quezon province.

Meanwhile, Bishop Marquez believed the idea of the government should be closer to the people. As a Filipino citizen and a Bishop, he is concern about the welfare of the people and nothing to do with the interest of certain politician and he being a Bishop.

“It’ is our obligation to vote and to pay taxes”. One of his topics discussed in his sermon was about the offering for church and for Ceasar’s administration taxes pertaining the separation of the church and states.

“Let them run their own government. As a Filipino citizen, I also paid my taxes”. Bishop Marquez told to The Star during the interview the Bishop’s residence.
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