Governor hopes NIR will be functional by 2025

Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson answers questions from the media in a press conference at Citadines Bacolod Thursday. (Dolly Yasa photo)

By Dolly Yasa

BACOLOD CITY — Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson expressed optimism that the Negros Island Region (NIR) will be operational by 2025.

“We are optimistic that it will be in place in 2025, the same optimism we had when we were waiting for the President to sign it,” Lacson told reporters during an interview at Citadines Bacolod on Thursday.

He emphasized that the primary focus now is on making the NIR functional.

Regarding the potential renaming from NIR to NISAR, Lacson stated he has no objections but reiterated that establishing the new region should be the priority.

“Down the road, we can consider including Siquijor in the name, but I don’t think that is the priority now,” he added.

Lacson also stressed the importance of securing the budget for 2025. “I think even more important now is to push for the budget for 2025 because right now they are preparing the General Appropriation Act (GAA), and so this is the time we can ask for the budget for NIR.”

“The best-case scenario is by 2025 we can have a budget for NIR, and we don’t have to share it anymore like before,” Lacson said.

He mentioned that Region 6 is prepared for the transition.

Lacson highlighted that a decision still needs to be made regarding whether all government offices for the NIR will be centralized in one location or spread across different sites.

Earlier, 5th District Representative Dino Yulo expressed optimism that the NIR would be established by 2025.

“It will all depend on how fast we can move in the Technical Working Group (TWG). Definitely, we hope we can hit the ground running by 2025,” Yulo said.


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