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Rama stops CPA port project due to permit issues

By: Kim Ablaña - CTU Intern | March 08,2024 - 10:25 PM

CPA Rama

Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama orders installation of a biofence around CPA’s port project near City Hall, halting construction due to permit issues. | Photo by Cebu City News and Information

CEBU CITY, Philippines – Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama ordered City Hall officials to stop the construction of a port at the back of the National Museum after the Cebu Port Authority (CPA) failed to secure a building permit.

The mayor even slammed the CPA for the lack of “decency” and “courtesy” due to the failure to update his office about its project situated within the city’s territorial waters.

“Mao na’y mga utok nga buringog. Na’ay bag-ong City Hall? Kinsa’y naghatag nila’g building permit?” Rama remarked.

The project is located behind the former Malacañang sa Sugbo, now the National Museum, and stretches towards the bayfront area near the Compania Maritima.

Reymarr Hijara, the head of the Cebu City Environment and Natural Resources Office (CCENRO), supervised the order of the installation of the biofence to prevent the expansion of CPA’s port project.

The city installed a makeshift biofence around the ongoing construction project earlier on Friday, March 8, after learning that the CPA did not heed the prior order to stop the construction project due to permit issues.

He said that he was assisted by personnel from the CCENRO, Office of the Building Official (OBO), Department of General Services (DGS), the city’s Bantay Dagat, and river troopers from the Task Force Gubat sa Baha.

Hijara said that the biofence installed marks a boundary indicated for the city’s territorial waters, adding that the project has threatened to obstruct the view of the city’s coastline.

“I also believe that constructing the wharf all the way to the plaza could potentially obstruct the coastline view, particularly once the international ship port security measures are enforced, restricting public access,” he said.

Hijara expressed the project had to be stopped as the coastal waters near the CPA’s project are “delicate ecosystems teeming with biodiversity.”

He also added that the city upholds its commitment for environmental preservation measures in all infrastructure projects.

“The installation of biofences aligns with this vision by ensuring that the port’s expansion does not compromise the city’s ecological integrity,” Hijara said.

“By adopting biofences, the Cebu City Government demonstrates a commitment to development that harmoniously coexists with nature,” he added.

The city now awaits legal action against CPA for pushing forward the construction amid permit issues.


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TAGS: Cebu City Mayor Michael L. Rama, Cebu Port Authority

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