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Taipan conferred as honorary mayor, adopted son of Bacolod City

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• CHRYSEE G. SAMILLANO

Camille Clarisse Co-Lao receives a copy of the resolution conferring her father, Lucio Co the title of Honorary Mayor and Adopted Son of Bacolod City, in the presence of Bacolod Vice Mayor El Cid Familiaran, her husband Michael Stephen Lao, and Mayor Alfredo Abelardo Benitez (l-r) at the Bacolod City Government Center Saturday* Mark Maningo photo

Executive Order No. 4, or An Order Constituting the Bacolod Arts and Culture Council (BACC), was signed by Camille Clarisse Co-Lao, who represented her father Lucio Co, following his conferment as Honorary Mayor and Adopted Son of Bacolod City at the Bacolod City Government Center Saturday.

Co’s conferment, which is part of the 19th Bacolaodiat Festival celebration in the city, was held during a special session conducted by the Bacolod Sangguniang Panlungsod.

The title of honorary mayor serves as a distinguished recognition given to individuals who have made exceptional contributions to the city’s economic growth and progress.

Lao, who was accompanied by her husband Michael Stephen Lao, was presented a copy of the resolution conferring her father, Lucio Co the title of Honorary Mayor and Adopted Son of Bacolod, in the presence of Mayor Alfredo Abelardo Benitez and Vice Mayor El Cid Familiaran, which was witnessed by members of the SP, Bacolaodiat Festival Inc., and Filipino-Chinese businessmen.

Benitez noted that all those conferred the title of Adopted Son and Honorary Mayor of Bacolod City in the past were all billionaires.

“Lucio Co is among these taipans,” he said during a program at the BCGC lobby where he enumerated all past Adopted Sons and Honorary Mayors of Bacolod namely Lucio Tan in 2006, John Gokongwei (2013), Henry Sy Sr. (2017), Jose Marie Chan (2018), Andrew Tan (2020), and Kevin Tan (2023).

Benitez said Bacolod has become popular because of all these names attached to it.

“Since there is already a historical tie between the City of Bacolod and your family, as well as your name, make Bacolod, if not your first home, at least your second home,” he said as he extended the invitation to the family of Co.

“You will be very much part of the development of the city and we look forward to having more investments (here),” Benitez added.

The mayor, meanwhile, said that Lucio Co was not feeling well to attend the conferment ceremony and had to send his daughter instead.

On the other hand, Benitez said S&R Membership Shopping, where Co sits as chairman, is expected to open in Bacolod City within the first quarter of this year and would be providing local employment.

Lucio Co is the current chairman of the Board of Directors for Cosco Capital, Inc. and the Keepers Holdings, Inc.

He also holds the position as Director of Puregold Price Club, Inc. and Philippine Bank of Communications. He is the chairman of the Board of Directors, namely, Puregold Finance, Inc., Puregold Realty Leasing & Management, Inc., Clean Green Energy Corporation, Grass Gold Renewable Energy (G2REC) Corporation, Forbes Corporation, Pamana Water Corporation among many others.

Co is also the current Chairman of the Board of Bacolod Real Estate Development Corporation (BREDCO).*

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