The second highest official of Pangasinan expressed the view that the present unity existing in the Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP) and the provincial government cannot just be torn by the mere issue of jai-alai.
Vice Mayor Jose Ferdinand Calimlim issued the statement in the face of the seeming feud that transpired last week between Governor Amado Espino Jr. and Sixth District Board Member Alfonso Bince Jr. over the issue of the proliferation of jai alai betting stations in Pangasinan which Bince wants investigated but which Espino took to mean as an affront against him.
Espino clarified he had nothing to do with the establishment of jai alai betting stations in many towns of Pangasinan as this was done by the mayors who issued to the applicant, Meridien Vista Gaming Corporation, mayor’s permit as well as business permit.
The governor indicated he has no power to question the discretion of the mayors who issued the permits based on the documents presented by the applicant as the mayors could be charged with the case of dereliction of duty if they did otherwise.
Calimlim surmised there may just be misunderstanding between the governor and Board Member Bince and expressed belief this can be ironed out soon for the good of the province and the people.
“I don’t think this will lead to split among us. We have remained united from the very start and we believe that we will remain united up to the end of this administration,” Calilim said.