Guardo seeks P200M budget for drainage projects to mitigate flooding
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The continuous flood problems most Cebu City barangays face during the rainy seasons is a cause for concern and needs urgent solution.
This was the statement of Cebu City Councilor Jerry Guardo in his privilege speech during the regular session this week, days after many of the city’s barangays were flooded during a downpour last June 12, 2021.
At least seven major areas in the city were affected mostly along the rivers and creeks as well as the downtown residential areas where water has accumulated in the natural catch basins.
“Human sa pagbunok sa uwan, ato gilayon nga gisuta ang mga lugar nga gibahaan sama sa Sitio Bucog, Brgy. T. Padilla ug mga bahin sa Brgy. Tejero, Tinago, Pari-an ug Day-as og atong nasaksihan ang makaluluoy nga kahimtang sa atong kaigsuonan kansang kabalayan ug kabtangan nalunang sa baha gumikan sa pag-awas sa mga sapa hilabi na sa bahin sa MJ Cuenco, Mc Arthur ug T. Padilla bridges tungod sa bul-og sa tubig baha nga dala usab ang nag tipuno-og nga basura.”
“Mr. Chairman, the problem of flooding has reached a critical and alarming level and can only get worse. According to PAGASA, the probability of near to above normal rainfall conditions is high in the next two months (June-July) this year,” said Guardo.
The councilor is concerned that if solutions to mitigate the flooding will be delayed again, the suffering of the city residents in flood-prone areas will only worsen as the rainy season continues.
Guardo said there is an urgent need to upgrade the drainage systems, immediately dredge and desilt creeks particularly the Day-as and T. Padilla Creek among others, and remove illegal structures that impede the waterways.
“Our Department of Engineering and Public Works (DEPW) thru Task Force Minus-Baha and Cebu City Environment and Natural Resources (CCENRO) River Troopers must continue their massive de-clogging of the drainage system and desilting our river creeks which are found to be heavily silted and have become a repository of wastes,” he said.
With this, Guardo is appealing to the city’s Executive Department to add a budget for flood mitigating measures in their proposed supplementary budget this year.
He is asking for a P200 million budget for flood control mitigation in Barangays T. Padilla, Tejero, Tinago, Pari-an, Day-as, Lorega San Miguel, Tisa, and Guadalupe.
The council has instructed the city’s Department of Public Works and Highway (DEPW) to prioritize the preparations of a Program of Works and Estimates (POWE) for the drainage improvement projects in the said areas as well.
Furthermore, the council has asked the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) to review and assess the design of existing bridges in T Padilla, M.J Cuenco, and Mc Arthur boulevard if these bridges can still cope up with the large volume of floodwater during heavy rains and to also start dredging of the mouth or outfall of Lahug River near the seawall of Pier 3.
Finally, Guardo is asking the Executive Department to purchase an Amphibian Excavator to maintain the dredging of the creeks and rivers.
The councilor said the city government must act on this “perennial problem” as the lives and properties of the residents are at stake and are currently at the mercy of the rains. /rcg
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