Special to the Manila Times
BACOLOD CITY, Oct. 17, 1961 – A move to divide Negros Occidental into two provinces was bared by Rep. Agustin M. Gatuslao during a symposium sponsored by the Negros Press Club at Hinigaran where four of the five known congressional aspirants for the third district were the main speakers.
Rep. Gatuslao, brother of Gov. Valeriano M. Gatuslao and Himamaylan Mayor Jose M. Gatuslao, is running for reelection for congress in the third district under the Nacionalista banner.
He revealed that a bill to split this province was presented in the last session of Congress but failed to pass because of opposition in certain quarters.
“But this time,” he vowed, “I’ll press the division if I am elected, because the big size of the province demands it.”
Jacinto Montilla, LP official candidate, assailed Gatuslao for abandoning the welfare of the southern towns and barrios during the latter’s term of eight years as congressman of the third district. Montilla pledged that, if elected, he will emphasize the building of roads that will connect the hinterlands to the towns.
Other speakers were Dr. Macario Zafre (NP) and Cesar R. Borromeo (Ind.). Dr. Zafra, who is related to President Garcia, said that he will utilize his close relations with Malacañang to the advantage of the people in the third district.
Borromeo, a former newspaperman and past president of the Negros Press Club, said that his past reputation as a fighting member of the fourth estate is guarantee enough that he will protect the interests of the poor.