Return to Inayawan
By extending the contract for private garbage hauler Jomara Konstruct Corp., Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña drove home the message that the city’s garbage would go anywhere except the Consolacion landfill whose operator has yet to collect the city’s payment for a previous arrangement.
The Team Rama bloc in the City Council, particularly Councilor Joel Garganera, had been emphatic about revising a deal with the Consolacion landfill since it appears that the facility is the only viable solution left after the Court of Appeals reaffirmed the closure of the Inayawan landfill.
But while he may not dwell on Jomara’s deal with the Consolacion landfill operator to dump the city’s garbage there, the mayor isn’t shy about trying to circumvent the Court of Appeals ruling by proposing a garbage transfer station in the old dumpsite.
As proposed by Councilor Eugenio Gabuya, the city would allocate one hectare within the landfill for the transfer station, bypassing a private garbage transfer station supposedly operated by a resident in Inayawan.
Both Councilors Garganera and Raymond Garcia saw the ploy to skirt the Court of Appeals ruling and they’re not biting, which leaves the mayor’s Bando Osmeña-Pundok Kauswagan (BO-PK) bloc with little choice but to lobby and push the proposal to a vote.
We wonder if the mayor and his BO-PK bloc realize the legal implications of circumventing the Court of Appeals ruling and if they can actually carry it out should the council vote against it.
What we do know is that the mayor is adamant about cutting costs, and for him that means eventually resuming the dumping of the city’s garbage in the Inayawan landfill even if it means going around the court ruling.
It may probably be too late in the day to even propose that the city itself look for another landfill site within its jurisdiction even if it would cost billions of pesos since the Osmeña administration sees no hope in finding and developing one.
So far, the only realistic solution apart from the Consolacion landfill is the provincial government’s plan to build its own landfill in some barangay in Carmen town, and even then, that plan is being opposed by residents there who rightfully fear the environmental impact such a facility will pose on their collective health.
Again, we have yet to learn from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) or any related agency for that matter on whether Cebu City can actually build another landfill within its area or not.
For now, though, the city government’s rationale for moving back to Inayawan is not the concern on how its garbage will affect those residents living near the dumpsite but the expense it would incur in disposing of it.
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