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Cebu News

In Cebu City’s lowland barangays: City takes over trash collection

Jean Marvette A. Demecillo - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines - Starting today, City Hall will take over garbage collec-tion in all the 49 lowland barangays of Cebu City.

Mayor Michael Rama said this is to ensure the cleanliness of the city for the upcoming fight between four-division world champion Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire Jr. and Hungarian Zsolt “Mr. Left Hook” Bedak at the Cebu City Sports Center on April 23.

In a press conference yesterday at the Rama Compound in Barangay Basak-San Nicolas, Rama said they came up with this decision after meeting with barangay captains, City Hall department heads and assistant department heads.

“It is incumbent that we will have to be expanding the issue about garbage. Nga ang lowland, with the barangay captains being aware on how it should be operational, will now be attended absolutely and generally by DPS,” he said.

With the centralization of garbage collection, Rama said the city will temporarily take back the city-issued garbage trucks to use them for the collection of garbage.

He said the DPS will head the deployment of the garbage trucks using the barangay drivers and loaders who are accepting salaries from the city.

When asked when the city will stop taking over garbage collection, he said “until the whole thing will appear to be no longer as much as we continue to be foreseeing concern.”

The discussion on the collection of garbage started last February 29 when Rama declared that the city government will take over the collection of the garbage in barangays Tejero, Guadalupe, and Labangon.

DPS head Dionisio Gualiza said all the drivers and loaders from the different barangays will now be recording their time-in and time-out with the DPS.

“There will be a uniform time for collection every morning, it will start at 4 a.m. for both the north and south district,” he said.

Gualiza said there will be two dispatching areas —at the city’s Septage Treatment Plant at the North Reclamation Area for the north district and at the DPS Compound at the South Road Properties for the south district.

At least 60 garbage trucks will be deployed to collect the garbage in different barangays of the city.

These garbage trucks, Gualiza said will travel immediately to the private landfill in Consolacion where the city has been dumping its garbage since the closure of the Inayawan landfill last year.

“Mas maka-abot g’yud ning atong mga trucks ngadto’s Consolacion bisan og layo and dili ta maguol nga maguba dayon kay 10-wheeler man ni,” he said.

Several barangay captains and other barangay officials, DPS personnel and other city hall officials signed a manifesto agreeing to the city’s takeover of garbage collection and disposal during the meeting yesterday.

The reasons for the takeover were cited as non-utility of the Waste Transfer Station in Inayawan, poor maintenance of the barangay’s garbage trucks, and ineffective collection in the barangay level, among others.

In the manifesto, barangay and city officials also agreed on the centralized collection of garbage in the city.

“Pagpakigsabot sa DPS sa tanan nga mga butang kalabut sa pagpakunhod sa basura (waste reduction), paglain-lain niini diha sa tinubdan (segregation at source), operas-yon sa koleksyon sa basura ug uban pang hisgutanan nga may kalabutan sa maong programa,” the manifesto read.

The manifesto also cited the Republic Act 9003 or the Solid Waste Management Act. In RA9003, the barangay is mandated to ensure the garbage segregation and collection.

The manifesto states that the law does not prohibit the city government from taking over should the barangays fail to exercise its mandate.

Solid Waste Management Board Head Jade Ponce said they have been consulting the barangay officials since Wednesday last week to discuss the centralization of garbagecollection.

Barangays affiliated with Bando Osmeña-Pundok Kauswagan did not show up yesterday, but are already aware that the city will take over the collection of garbage starting today.

Labangon Barangay Captain Victor Buendia said he will just observe how the city government will run garbage collection.

“We’ll see kon makaya sa panghambog ni Rama ang pagkolekta sa tanang basura sa urban barangays,” he said.

Buendia said he does not have any problem with the collection of garbage in the internal areas of his barangay, adding that it is the city government’s collection that is making his barangay dirty.

He said the city government is supposedly the ones collecting garbage in Katipunan Street, Tres de Abril Street and other areas, but DPS reportedly does not collect the garbage in the areas.

While he was invited to attend the meeting, Buendia said he declined saying he knows Rama will “only talk nonsense.” — /BRP (FREEMAN)

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