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Guv sees no need to remove anti-corruption billboard

| by: Xerxes Alkuino

The anti-corruption billboard hanged at the façade of Cebu International Convention Center (CICC) would remain for now.

Governor Hilario P. Davide III reiterated that it is part of free speech and is line with his administration’s quest for good governance.

The governor issued the statement after his meeting with Cebuanos for Good Governance and Development (CGGD) last November 12. The CGDD is the group behind the billboard.

The billboard has caught the eye of motorists passing the CICC in Mandaue City.

The first billboard said “Never Again”. Subsequently, the group behind it added its cost “Php 840,202,438.05 (MILLION) OF PEOPLE’s MONEY WASTED.” CICC was built during the time of former Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia.

In his earlier interviews, Gov. Davide stated that he has no personal knowledge on the people behind the billboard. After his meeting with CGGD, he said he was “convinced” they are reasonable individuals.

“I believed this is a legitimate group after I spok to each of them and now nigawas na jud sila,” said the governor.

He added that the group informed him that they are a coalition of cause-oriented groups specifically Bisdak, Lesbians Gay Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Community, and Kabataan Partylist.

One CGGD member, who joined the meeting, is an officer of a fisherfolk association of Cordova town.

According to the governor, he was also told that the coalition will be officially introduced to the public later this month. He said that they asked him if they could hold the event in CICC but he told them that they will think about it first.

Gov. Davide also said he was informed by Mandaue City Mayor Jonas Cortes that the group has no permit from the city government to put up the billboards.

He said the city government might summon the group.

Renil Oliva of Kabataan Partylist, one of those who met with the governor, said they were willing to comply with Mandaue City’s regulations on advertisements.