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Cebu News

Cebu City to extend Jomara hauling contract

Odessa O. Leyson - The Freeman
Cebu City to extend Jomara hauling contract
Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella

CEBU, Philippines — Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella will ask Jomara Konstruckt Inc. to extend its garbage hauling contract with the city government until July 20 while City Hall evaluates the contract of another firm, ARN Central Waste Management, Inc.

“In the meantime, since mo-expire naman ang contract sa Jomara... Naa pama'y nahabilin nga P6 million, mangayo lang una ko og extension nila until of the July 20," Labella told The FREEMAN.

At P647 as tipping fee per ton of trash, ARN secured a P65 million contract to haul the city’s trash from July to December this year. It entered into an agreement with City Hall during the time of former mayor Tomas Osmeña.

City Attorney Rey Gealon said they would want to check the terms and conditions of the contract, specifically if ARN has a special land use permit to operate the Material Recovery Facility (MRF) and engineered sanitary landfill in Barangay Binaliw.

The City Council reportedly approved the permit during Osmeña’s time.

Administration councilors have been very vocal against the operation of the landfill in Binaliw for they are reportedly not assured it can manage the waste thrown there successfully.

In a separate interview, Department of Public Services (DPS) acting head, Engr. Joel Biton, said they will utilize the remaining funds for garbage disposal amounting to P5 million to extend Jomara’s contract.

Since the controversial landfill in Barangay Inayawan was shut down in December 2016, the city government began contracting the services of a private hauler.

Biton clarified that trash is not being dumped at the landfill in Inayawan and Jomara utilizes the private transfer station at the back of the landfill.

Biton said Jomara has no pending work load, so it is impossible that there will be trash still uncollected at the private transfer station.

"Paspas kaayo na sila; wala na sila'y backlog. Wala'y magpundo nga basura diha (They work fast; they don’t have a backlog. There is no garbage that’s left uncollected)," he said.

Sherwin Santos, president and executive director of ARN Central Waste Management Inc., said the city has not reached out to them just yet to discuss the contract but they welcome the move to review the agreement.

"We stand supportive of the Executive Department’s review of all contracts entered into by the City. It should be every transition team’s prerogative and initiative to do so to ensure that the welfare of the city is considered foremost and that the contracts it enters into is beneficial and fair," Santos said.

"As far as we are concerned, the contract we have with the City went through bidding process to which we complied for the required documentation and qualification. So long as the proper documentation are in order, these matters should not be an issue," he added.

Santos said he invited the city government for a discussion about their solid waste management system but no response yet.

"The Executive Department has not yet reached out to us at the moment. We visited their office the other day to extend invitation for the equipment operators and supervisors for a briefing regarding waste management systems.However, I think everybody is busy for the transition," he said. —  JMO (FREEMAN)

EDGARDO LABELLA

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