TABUK CITY – Rep. Allen Jesse C. Mangaoang underscored the building of roads in remote communities of the province will help in curbing the proliferation of marijuana production sites in different parts of Kalinga, particularly in Tinglayan town where such illegal hemp naturally exists.
Mangaoang, who is also the caretaker congressman of Mountain Province, said that during his term as the province’s lawmaker, some funds were initially infused for the building of roads to interconnect some barangays of Tinglayan up to the foot of Mount Chumanchil, the identified natural production area of marijuana to allow law enforcers and anti-narcotics agents to monitor the growth of the illegal hemp aside from allowing farmers to have easier access to the markets for the sale of their agricultural produce.
“We really need to put up quality and standard roads in the remote villages of the province that will connect to major roads to allow people to have easier access to the markets for the disposal of their agricultural produce. We will continue to make representations with concerned government agencies so that funds will be continuously earmarked for the building of roads in the countryside for our people to bring their produce to the markets,” Mangaoang stressed.
The Kalinga lawmaker said that the construction of roads from the existing Bontoc-Tabuk road up to the foot of Mount Chumanchil initially got a funding of P100 million but the appropriation will be on a multi-year basis until such time it will reach the foot of the said marijuana production area and it will connect to barangay Mallango in Tinglayan then will again meet with a portion of the Bontoc-Tabuk road to address the plight of people who long longed for roads over the past several decades for them to easily market their produce.
According to him, access roads are important in the rural areas of the province so that law enforcers and anti-narcotics agents could easily respond to reports on the presence of marijuana plants in the area while farmers can also easily bring their agricultural produce to the nearest markets and can further encourage them to engage in the production of cash crops other than marijuana.
Mangaoang claimed that it is unfortunate there are reports that marijuana plants had been eradicated in Mount Chumanchil and other remote villages in the town of Tinglayan, but the fact is, marijuana plants naturally thrive in the area despite repeated marijuana eradication operations, thus, the need for the put up of the existing access roads so that it will be easier for law enforcers and anti-narcotics agents to respond when the said plants grow in the mountains.
He explained the road under construction will be circumferential going as far as the foot of Mount Chumanchil before exiting in the other part of the municipality thus contributing to enhanced livelihood and improved lives of people in the communities that will be traversed.