BALANGA City, Bataan- The National Executive Board of the League of Cities of the Philippines on Thursday led by its President Quezon City Mayor Herbert “Bistek” Bautista started its two-day strategic planning in Balanga City.
About 40 city mayors from all over the country started their day in Bataan by visiting the Bataan Tourism Center where they were entertained by the Banda Kawayan and served native delicacies like suman, kalamay, buko juice for their merienda.
Some of the city executives even tried the bamboo instruments of the band. Balanga City Mayor Jose Enrique Garcia 3rd welcomed the group and showed them a picture of World War II in the province through a diorama of events.
“Strategic planning ito kung ano mangyayari sa loob ng Liga for the next three years, kung ano puwedeng maitulong sa kanya-kanya naming lugar at sa kabuuan ng bansa,” Bautista said.
Other issues to be taken up in the strategic planning are about disaster management, how to help city residents and the strengthening of the capacity of mayors in leadership, the former actor said.
Bautista, now 45 years old, reminisced his days in Bataan when at 17 years old he joined stage shows during fiesta. “Ang laki na ng ipinagbago ng Bataan lalo na ng Balanga, kitang-kita ang pag-unlad.”
Garcia said for the LCP to choose Balanga as site of the planning session was a humbling experience. “This is an opportunity for us to showcase best practices like our ‘no smoking’ policy and the beautiful tourist spots not only in the city but in the province,” said the mayor who is LCP vice-chairman.
After the strategic planning at the Crown Royale Hotel, on Thursday afternoon the mayors visited GN Power Plant and the Maritime Academy of Asia in the Pacific, both in Mariveles after which they had a taste of scenic view at the roof deck of the new Eba Hotel adjacent to the Plaza Mayor de Balanga.
On Friday early morning at the Balanga plaza, the mayors will be joining health undersecretary Eric Tayag in a “hataw” and bird-watching with breakfast at the wetland and nature park.
They then continue their second day on Friday of strategic planning. In the afternoon, they will go to historic Mt. Samat and in the evening at Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar in Bagac town where Gov. Albert Garcia will welcome them.