BAGUIO CITY – The realization of the integrated solid waste disposal facility in barangay Sto. Tomas Apugan here will put an end to the garbage disposal problem of the city government that will save hundreds of millions of pesos in public funds from being used to haul out the city’s solid waste to the engineered sanitary landfill in the lowlands, Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan said here.
He said the city will initially fence off the 135-hectare property that was previously identified for city needs using a P5 million budget last year and an additional P20 million from this year’s budget to prevent informal settlers from encroaching into the metes and bounds of the city property.
The city mayor added now that the survey of the area has been completed, the city general services office was tasked to pinpoint the 50-hectare area where the city’s engineered sanitary landfill, waste-to-energy facility and existing Environmental Recycling System (ERS) machines will be set up with clear instructions to exclude parts that are already inhabited in order to prevent more conflicts in the future.
“ It will be easier for the city government to push through with the project because the property is owned by the local government. Further, the city will have greater control of the situation because it is owned by the local government,” Domogan stressed.
He warned local residents in the area not to be carried away by members of militant organizations who came all the way from Quirino province, Luisita in Tarlac among others just to brain wash them into opposing the project to suit their own personal and political interests.
Once the integrated solid waste disposal facility will be established, he explained the city government will spending over P100 million in public funds which is currently being used for the hauling out of the city’s solid waste to Pangasinan and Tarlac, thus, the savings would be used to fund the implementation of barangay-based priority projects that will improve the living condition of the people and improve the state of infrastructure in the city’s 128 barangays.
According to him, the city’s technical team are now studying where to locate the road whether it will be situated in Camp 7 area or in the Sto. Tomas Apugan are depending on which site will entail cheaper expenses for the city government.
In relation to the residents who will be displaced with the put up of the facility, Domogan explained that the city will continue to consult and dialogue with them to find ways on how to spare them from whatever damages that they will suffer once the project will push through.
“If the affected residents possess the necessary documents to show proof of their ownership of the lands that they occupy, then it is but proper for the city to give due compensation and recognition to such claims, but if they do not have any document to show proof of ownership, then they have no right to obstruct the city’s project,” he said.
What is important, Domogan emphasized, is that the city government had been honest with the affected residents and that local officials do not intend to cheat them in whatever way because the city had always been transparent about the implementation of the project that would eventually solve the garbage disposal problem of the city.
Domogan appealed for continuous consultations among the affected stakeholders in order to achieve a lasting solution to the garbage problem. By Dexter A. See