Sen. Lacson files bill seeking to split Iloilo City into 2 legislative districts

Senator Panfilo Lacson filed a bill on Tuesday seeking to divide Iloilo City into two congressional districts.

Lacson introduced Senate Bill No. 1368 entitled “An Act Reapportioning the Lone Legislative District and the Sangguniang Panlungsod of the Iloilo City.”

The measure seeks to reapportion the lone legislative district of Iloilo city into two (2) separate legislative districts, namely: (a) First Legislative District to be composed of Jaro, Lapaz and Mandurriao; and (b) the Second Legislative District to be composed of City Proper, Molo, Arevalo and Lapuz.

In the explanatory note of the bill, Lacson said that based on 2015 census of Philippine Statistics Authority, Iloilo City already has a population of 447,992.

If the 1.49% average annual growth rate continues, the city would be doubling its population in 47 years, he added.

Based on the Constitution, each legislative district must have a population not lesser than 250,000.

The senator also quoted the Supreme Court decision in the case of Aquino v. COMELEC that “while Sec. 5 (3), Article VI of the Constitution requires a city to have a minimum population of 250,000 to be entitled to a representative, it does not have to increase its population by another 250,000 to be entitled to and additional district.”

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Here’s the full text of SBN 1368:

Iloilo City Lone District representative Jerry P. Treñas, who have been refiling a similar bill since 2010, welcomed the Lacson’s move.

He noted that the redistricting of the city is “long overdue.”

“It is about time that Iloilo City, which has long been acknowledged as the cultural, commercial, academic, religious and governmental center in Western Visayas, gets another legislative district,” said Treñas.

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