Fresh road clearing order issued as campaign continues
BAGUIO CITY – Mayor Benjamin Magalong warned anew business owners and residents here to refrain from using and obstructing roads near their properties to avoid penalties for continuously ignoring national and local government orders on road clearing operations.
In the Management Committee meeting Oct. 8, the mayor said the city can also be nasty in implementing the law just to show headstrong businessmen and residents especially along the central business district that it is bent on imposing the law.
He ordered concerned agencies to confiscate all materials and goods owned by businessmen and residents that will be found stored along roads right-of-way.
“Seize every item you will see and we will crush them. Even if the owners are my friends, I will do it just to send a strong message that we mean business,” the mayor directed City Engineer Edgar Victorio Olpindo.
Olpindo reported that 25 percent of the city’s roads had been cleared of encroachments as of Oct. 8.
He said the city has a total of 306 national, city and barangays roads and 118 had been cleared in cooperation with the barangay officials and residents.
Of the total, 138 roads were found to have encroachments and 118 had been cleared while the rest had none though are still being validated.
All the roads will also be subjected to continuous monitoring to ensure that they will remain obstruction-free.
The demolition of illegal structures along the roads right-of-way of Marcos Highway also resumed last Friday to continue the dismantling of the five two-story buildings partially torn down in the last operations last Sept. 25.
Asst. City Engr. Constancio Imson Jr. reported that the two operations undertaken last Sept. 19 and Sept. 25 on 34 structures that were issued demolition orders resulted in the removal of ten shanties and partial demolition of five two-to-three story buildings.
Ten were voluntarily torn down by the owners; seven were put on hold after their owners presented new documents while two three-story buildings were left untouched after the CEO ran out of funds.
The mayor and City Administrator Bonifacio Dela Pena instructed concerned department heads to work out the funding requirement to ensure continuous and speedy operations.
Imson said that upon completion of the first batch, they will move on to the next 67 structures lined up for demolition.
A total of 267 structures were identified to have encroached into RROWs along the highway.
Similar operations will be undertaken along other national highways like Naguilian Road, Kennon Road and Loakan Road.
The mayor said separate funds for the widening of these roads are being worked out for implementation next year.
The operations were in compliance with the DILG Memorandum Circular 121-2019 issued in line with the President’s order for the clearing of roads nationwide issued on July 29, 2019.** Aileen P. Refuerzo