FOR VILMA SANTOS, FAMILY IS FIRST PRIORITY
Lipa City, Batangas, Nov. 21, 1998 - A prominent resident of Lipa has told Manila Standard columnist Isah Red that his city's mayor, actress Vilma Santos, spends only three days of each week in Lipa, and the rest of the week in her Metro Manila residence.
"For the past weeks, she's been working only for three days a week: Monday to Wednesday," Isah quotes his source.
The writer adds that "the multi-awarded actress might have been overwhelmed by the scope of her duties as a local government official, plus the numerous problems in the city that need to be addressed."
Vilma had told everyone from the very beginning that she's going to divide her time between her family and her duties and obligations to Lipa City as mayor. Her supporters claim that even when she's not in Lipa, she is in constant touch with her Lipa-based staff, monitoring activities from wherever she happens to be.
But Isah's source says that is not enough.
"She has to make herself visible to her constituents. Nothing is decided upon (at the City Mayor's office) after Wednesday. People who want to do business in the city have to wait until the following Monday to get things done, especially those whose documents need the approval or signature of the mayor," he complained.
Vilma claims that "It's already a sacrifice for me to be away from my kids for three days."
The actress tries to make up by staying in the mayor's office beyond the regular office hours.
"Now I also need to be with my children and my husband for the weekend," Mayor Vilma Santos- Recto said.
Her husband, Batangas Congressman Ralph Recto, holds office in Metro Manila because he reports for work at the Batasang Pambansa complex which houses the House of Representatives.
Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi
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