Rep. John Mizuno (Kamehameha Heights, Kalihi Valley, Fort Shafter) has taken the lead in welcoming a delegation from the League of Cities of the Philippines to Hawai’i. On March 1st, 2012 a Memorandum of Understanding and Cooperation was signed, formally establishing a relationship between the State of Hawai’i and the one hundred twenty-two cities that compose the League of Cities of the Philippines.
“There is no questioning the deep connection between the State of Hawai’i and the Philippines,” said Rep. Mizuno. “Formalizing the relationship opens up the possibility for further political, social, and economic cooperation between the two parties. Working with the League of Cities establishes a direct partnership between the State of Hawai’i and local chief executives from 122 cities in the Philippines.”
12 mayors and 1 vice-mayor representing 122 cities and 40 million people made the four-day trip to Hawai’i, which was the first of its kind. A complete list of delegates is attached.
Signing the Memorandum of Understanding and Cooperation was not the only order of business for the trip. The delegation was welcomed with “Aloha Night” at the Philippine Consulate, participated in a Disaster Preparedness/Risk Management Forum, toured the Civil Defense Center, toured the State Foundation on Culture and the Arts, participated in a Tourism Forum, participated in a forum on Human Services and Juvenile Justice, toured Pearl Harbor and laid a wreath at the Arizona Memorial, were honored with a floor presentation by the House, and attended a reception at Washington Place.
During the floor presentation, League President, Mayor Oscar Rodriquez delivered a message from President of the Philippines, Benigno S. Aquino III.
“Forming a union with the League of Cities of the Philippines not only strengthens the bond between our Filipino-Hawaiian community and their country of origin, it connects the state with a valuable partner in the Pacific,” added Rep. Mizuno. “This trip marks the dawn of an era of increased economic, cultural, and social exchange between the state of Hawai’i and the Philippines.”