FIRST TERM. Bacolod City Mayor Alfredo Abelardo Benitez addresses local government employees during his first flag-raising ceremony at the Government Center grounds on Monday (July 4, 2022). He told city hall employees to go the extra mile and give Bacolod the service it deserves. (Photo courtesy of Albee Benitez Facebook)

BACOLOD CITY – Mayor Alfredo Abelardo Benitez has enjoined city officials and employees here to do more than what is expected of them in the delivery of government services.

“Let us all go the extra mile. Let us all work together. We should do nothing less because that is what Bacolod deserves,” Benitez said in his speech during his first flag-raising ceremony as mayor at the Government Center grounds on Monday.

He asked for patience in his first foray as a local chief executive after serving as congressman of the third district of Negros Occidental from 2010 to 2019 and economic affairs consultant of the provincial government in the last three years.

“To the department heads, give me a little bit more time to understand how things work, how to run things. I would ask your patience. But being new in the job doesn’t mean that we will not be effective,” he added.

In his inaugural address on July 1, Benitez said his administration will reengineer government transaction systems, and improve frontline services for efficiency for the city government to develop a closer relationship with the people.

“We will also orient and train our front desk personnel to be courteous to our constituents, regardless of status in life. Our frontline employees are the face of the Government Center. They should always be smiling. We are the City of Smiles, right? This way, we give due respect to our people. This way, we give them value that they deserve,” he said.

Benitez said the city government will harness the power of digital technology to enhance efficiency in transactions and ensure impartiality and non-partisanship in the delivery of government services.

He said he wants to restore public trust grounded on transparency.

“It is only by being transparent, by being accountable that we can gain the trust of our people. That is why one of our first orders of business is to create a Good Governance Committee to nominate the members of the Bacolod Truth Commission that will investigate allegations of graft and corruption,” Benitez said. (PNA)