MOD to Cebu City councilor: We did nothing inhumane
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Cebu City Market Operations Division (MOD) insists that their clearing operation was implemented properly, fairly, and humanely for the displaced vendors of Unit II and III of the Carbon Market.
MOD Head, Irvin Cabales, said he was surprised by the scathing statements of Cebu City Councilor Jessica Resch in her privilege speech on Wednesday, September 15, 2021, during the regular session over their clearing operations last September 13, 2021.
Cabales clarified that there was no “inhumane demolition” as claimed by Resch in her statement about the 20 to 30 stalls affected in the Lavo Seaside operation.
Cabales said that all MOD did was relocate the affected vendors and clear the old stalls because they would be building new ones for them.
“Unsa may naka inhumane nga amo mang sementoan to nga area ug among ayohon ang mga stalls kay bahaon ang area? Ibalik ra man nato ang mga vendors didto. Perhaps if nangutana lang si konsehal nato sa MOD, andam ra man ta moexplain,” he said.
(What is inhumane about that that all we are doing is to cement the area and fix the stalls because the area would be flooded easily? We will return them there. Perhaps, if our councilor had just asked the MOD, we are ready to explain to her.)
Cabales said that the renovation of the stalls were part of the phasing of the Carbon Modernization project and in fact, it should be completed in a week if only there was no resistance.
However, the MOD met some resistance among the 30 vendors, who were relocated, and upon investigation, the MOD found out that they were living in these stalls, which was essentially illegal because these stalls were rented out for business use only.
“Dili gyod pwede nga dili nato tanggalon. Ang area sementohan og utro kay area pwerte ka lapok kay ang dalan dinha elevated so ang tubig mosulod. Ilang mga atop ra intawn mga sin ra, magtulo og ulan. Dili gyod conducive nga maninda,” said Cabales.
(Those should be removed. We will cement the area again because it is really muddy there and the roads there are elevated so the water would enter the area. Their roofs are only corrugated steel and when it rains, [holes from the roof] cause the water to drip inside. So it is not conducive for selling their goods.)
The plan is to relocate and fix the stalls of 500 vendors as part of the interim market that will be the Carbon’s main market for the next two years while the modern Carbon Market at Freedom Park will be constructed.
However, the MOD only began with 30 vendors because of the limited space for the tent relocation for the meantime.
Cabales expects that by Sunday, September 19, 2021, they will have at least 10 ready stalls so the vendors can go back there.
“Unsay may issue? Ang issue is if dili nato sila pabalikon, unya pabalikon man sila,” said Cabales.
(What is the issue? The issue if if we will not let them return to their stalls, but we will let them return.)
The MOD head appeals to Councilor Resch to conduct a dialogue with them so they can explain the plan of the clearing operations, which have already been already announced to the affected vendors two months prior to September 13.
“Abli ra gyod among opisina sa mga pangutana. Nahibulong lang gyod mi sa iyang gisulti nga inhumane kay wala man gyoy inhumane ato,” he said.
(Our office is open for their questions. We are confused about their statement about being inhumane because there is nothing inhumane about what we did.)
Once the stalls are fixed, the MOD assured that the displaced vendors, who are staying in a relocation area still in the Carbon Market, will be able to return to their original spots.
The MOD will be called in a citizen’s hour in the City Council on September 22 to explain the incident. The City Council also asked the Commission on Human Rights to look into the clearing operations.
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