By Argyll Geducos
President Duterte signed Republic Act (RA) No. 11243 reapportioning the first legislative district of the province of South Cotabato which effectively creates the lone legislative district of General Santos City.
Under the new law, signed March 11, the first legislative district of the province will be composed of Polompok, Tamapakan, and Tupi.
The Second Legislative District will be composed of Koronadal City, Banga, Lake Sebu, Norala, Santo Niño, Surallah, Tantangan, and T’Boli.
General Santos City will be the province’s third legislative district.
Based on the new law, the incumbent representatives of the present First and Second Legislative District of the province shall continue to represent the districts until the new representatives have been duly elected and qualified in the next elections after the law takes effect.
The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is also mandated to issue the necessary rules and regulations to implement the Act within 30 days after its effectivity.
The law will take effect 15 days after it gets published in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation.
RA 11243 originated by the House of Representatives and was passed by members of the Lower House on May 2, 2017. It was amended by the Senate on September 3, 2018. Amendments were concurred in by the Lower House on January 29 this year.
This is the sixth law on reapportionments of congressional districts signed by President Duterte. It follows legislative district changes in Aklan, Isabela, Cavite, Calamba City in Laguna, and Southern Leyte.
House Bill 5162 was filed by South Cotabato (1st District) Representative Pedro Acharon Jr.