“Este un muy memorable y un muy significante ocacion na di mi vida que yo personalmente nunca ay olvida [This is one very memorable and one very significant occasion in my life that I myself will never forget.],” Zamboanga City Mayor Celso Lorenzo Lobregat said in Chabacano in his response to his conferment of Doctor of Humanities (honoris causa) by the Western Mindanao State University (WMSU) last July 16.
In a solemn Conferment Ceremony held at the university’s gymnasium, Lobregat, a noted public servant was conferred the said degree in recognition of his distinguished contribution and commitment, not only to the university but to the community as well. He is remarkable in his advocacy in addressing the problems of the city’s public education sector.
“Our concern for the education of every Zamboangueño child is fervent and zealous. We firmly believe education is key to eliminating poverty in the city, “he expressed. “It is our view that education empowers people to make informed decisions and opens them to new opportunities to improve the quality of their lives,” the mayor said with conviction.
It is also worth mentioning that Lobregat has been strong in the enforcement of measures against drug cases, human trafficking and terrorism, which are ceaseless perils in the peninsula. He has also played a major role in promoting the Department of Education’s Mother Tongue Based Multi-Lingual Education program by initiating the production of essential Chabacano instruction materials for schoolchildren.
The bestowment of the award was headed by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) Presiding Chairperson-Hon. Nona S. Ricafort and university president-Dr. Milabel Enriquez-Ho.
Among the personalities who graced the formal event were members of the WMSU Board of Regents, Aurora Lone District-Representative Juan Edgardo M. Angara, Department of Education Secretary-Bro. Armin A. Luistro, members of the Zamboanga City Council, CHED Region IX Director-Dr. Emmylou B. Yanga, some officials of the Philippine National Police and members of the family of the honoree. (Ekeena O. Lim, PAO-WMSU)