Press Release
March 10, 2016


CALBAYOG CITY--Sen. Grace Poe expressed support for the creation of a Samar Island Region to accelerate economic development and improve the delivery of public services in the Samar provinces, which remain among the poorest in the country.

As an administrative region, Eastern Samar, Northern Samar and Samar will be plucked out of the Eastern Visayas Region or Region VIII. It will enjoy independence in regional planning and management.

The proposal follows the creation of a Negros Island Region, the country's 18th region, through an executive order signed by President Aquino in May 2015.

"Ang importante kasi kaya nagkakaroon ng ganyan ay para yung basic services ng gobyerno ay madaling makarating sa ating mga kababayan. Kung ito ay makakatulong at mas mapapadali ang serbisyo ng gobyerno, bakit naman hindi? Kaya para sa akin, prayoridad ko 'yun, susuportahan ko," Poe said when asked by local media on the issue during her visit to Calbayog City, Samar.

Poe, the leading presidential candidate, said creating a Samar region is consistent with her programs of government, which focus on more efficient delivery of services, inclusive economic development and job creation.

She said projects that will effectively reduce poverty will top her First 100 Days agenda.

Based on the 2012 Poverty Statistics, the three Samar provinces are listed in the 15 poorest provinces in the country. Eastern Samar has a 55.4 percent poverty incidence, the second highest in the Philippines.

"Sa first 100 days, nakatutok tayo sa papaano magkakaroon ng mas malaki at mas maraming kabuhayan ang ating mga kababayan, trabaho para sa kanila. Iro-roll out natin ang mga imprastrakturang proyekto kaagad-agad, dahil isang iglap lang tapos na yung anim na taon mo," Poe said.

In an administrative region, provinces can pool their resources together and will have control of the income for the benefit of the local residents.

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