By Nora Soriño
Iligan City Bureau Chief .
Iligan City — In a speech at the flag raising ceremony at the city hall grounds at Buhanginan Hills Tuesday, City Mayor Celso Regencia said he could not accept Siao’s offer of reconciliation.
In an emotion-filled speech, he said how can he when he had been detained for a crime “which I did not do,” and had also been suspended.
It was learned earlier that Rep. Frederick Siao, himself reelected for the same position as Regencia had conveyed messages of reconciliation to Regencia and the other winning candidates on the mayor’s team.
To recall, the mayor was incarcerated for more than one year at the jail facility at Tipanoy this city in connection with the ambush of the convoy of then-Congressman Vicente Belmonte near the Laguindingan airport, Dec. 11, 2014 for which he was tagged as the “mastermind.” Belmonte came out unscathed although three of his aides died. The mayor was later released after the charges against him were dismissed.
Siao is allied with Belmonte. To recall too, Siao who was then a city councilor was among those who signed the documents that led to the mayor’s suspension by the Ombudsman for six months, in 2015. This was before his detention for the “ambush” charges.
The mayor also spoke of the Iligan Diesel Power Plant which the city had then owned but which the previous administration under Mayor Lawrence Ll. Cruz sold.
Earlier, City Administrator Atty. Leo Zaragoza said because of such move, the city is now suffering from high power costs.
Other winners in the team of Siao are Bong Abragan, Queenie Belmonte, Michelle Sweet, and Pisyong Larrazabal. They ran for the post of city councilors. Belmonte, to note is an incumbent while the three were councilors in a previous administration.