DPWH Bacolod, DENR, Edison Construction Scored for Mangrove Cutting
The Department of Public Works and Highways’ (DPWH) Bacolod City District Engineering Office, the Manila-based Edison Construction & Development, and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) are being asked on who gave the authority to cut scores of very old mangrove trees at a multi-million-peso flood control project site in Bacolod.
‘FLOOD CONTROL & MANGROVE DESTRUCTION’. Is the DENR aware of this mangrove destruction at the P148-M flood control project site at Gatuslao Extension (near Go Hotel & Robinsons Bacolod) undertaken by the DPWH Bacolod City District Eng’g Office and Edison Construction? Yesterday’s photos show that the thinning mangrove tree population is due to ongoing engineering works. Why no billboard that indicates the details of the multi-million-peso project?* (Arman Toga photos)
At the same time, DPWH Bacolod District Engineer, Abraham C. Villareal whose office is reportedly supervising the project, is also being asked, why the P148 million flood control project near the bridge along Gatuslao Extension, between 29th Street-Gatuslao and Gigs Bakery and Go Hotel (back of Robinsons Place Bacolod), has no billboard indicating project details.
A persistent concerned citizen, requesting anonymity, accompanied the Negros Daily Bulletin (NDB) yesterday to the site.
THINNING MANGROVE. This is a part of the mangrove tree plantation that keeps on getting thinner everyday, at the flood control project along Gatuslao Extension in Bacolod City, reportedly supervised by the DPWH Bacolod City District Engineering Office and Edison Construction company. Who gave the go signal to cut these trees?* (Arman Toga photo)
The project is highly-visible from a bridge along Gatuslao Extension when one takes a short cut to Robinsons Place Bacolod from the south (29th Street), or if one is from Robinsons Place west parking area to Gatuslao from the north.
The extent of damages to the mangrove trees are visible.
Piles of rocks and an operating heavy equipment can be seen from the other side of the river where many mangrove trees once stood.
The temporary office of the construction firm Edison is on the opposite side of the river, sitting beside a new road designed to connect Banago and Eroreco once completed, which is part of the flood control project.
DENR & ILLEGAL CUTTING.
The concerned citizen said he is asking who gave the construction firm or the DPWH the permit to cut down or uproot the “century-old mangrove trees” in the area.
“The DENR must investigate and file charges against maybe Edison the construction firm or against the DPWH Bacolod City Engineereing Office for cutting the mangrove trees. It is a criminal offense. Somebody or some people have to pay for this,” the concerned citizen said.
DPWH & BILLBOARD.
He also told NDB that the project may have already expired, and that Engr. Villareal needs to explain about the “deliberate” absence of a billboard which baffle motorists and residents alike.
It is mandated by the DPWH national office to always put up a billboard on all government project sites, indicating the name of the project, the contractors involved, the duration of the project or its target completion date, the cost, the supervising agency, etc.
“I am calling on Bacolod Congressman Greg Gasataya to do some investigation because the way I understand it, this is a project under his office. Maybe the good congressman does not know about the cutting of mangrove trees and the irregularities in this project,” the concerned citizen said.
NDB is seeking more knowledgable sources on the project and on mangrove cutting. * (Arman P. Toga)