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Mas lalapit kay Digong! Bill seeks transfer of seat of gov’t to Davao City

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By: Xave Gregorio

A bill seeking to relocate the seat of government from Metro Manila to Davao City in order to break “Manila imperialism” was filed Tuesday (January 16) at the House of Representatives.

The bill, authored by Kabayan Party-list Reps. Ron Salo and Ciriaco Calalang, wants the presidential palace, vice presidential palace, the Senate, the House of Representatives, the Supreme Court, constitutional offices and national offices of government agencies transferred to the hometown of President Rodrigo Duterte.

All of these offices will be housed in a National Government Center which will be constructed three years after the bill is enacted into law.

“Certainly, the decentralization of power will break the stranglehold of Metro Manila in the country’s political, economic, and cultural affairs,” Salo and Calalang said in the bill’s explanatory note.

“The relocation of the seat of government will also help spur development in the countryside, especially in Mindanao,” they said.

While the seat of government will be relocated to Davao City, the financial capital of the country will remain in Manila.

The bill will allocate P1 billion for the construction of the National Government Center, which will be sourced from the savings of the Office of the President. Additional funding in succeeding years will be included in the national budget.

Permanent government employees who would be affected by the relocation will be given the option to resign or avail of an early retirement.

Malacañang earlier said Duterte is more keen on spending time in Davao, particularly at the Presidential Guest House in Panacan, also known as Panacañang.