PROBE head Raquel Arce confirmed that the total number of ambulant vendors in Colon Street and Osmeña Boulevard who have been removed from their previous spots has now reached 386. The remaining 136 chose to transfer near the Senior Citizens Park, which is another area allotted for relocation.
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More vendors move to new locations
Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon, Mary Ruth Malinao (The Freeman) - September 29, 2019 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines —  The Cebu City Prevention, Restoration, Order, Beautification, and Enhancement (PROBE) team yesterday facilitated the transfer of around 250 ambulant vendors from Colon Street and Osmeña Boulevard to Tabo sa Banay in P. Gullas Street.

PROBE head Raquel Arce confirmed that the total number of ambulant vendors in Colon Street and Osmeña Boulevard who have been removed from their previous spots has now reached 386. The remaining 136 chose to transfer near the Senior Citizens Park, which is another area allotted for relocation.

This is in line with Memorandum Circular 2019-121 issued by Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) giving all local government units 60 calendar days to reclaim public roads from private use to ease traffic as ordered by President Rodrigo Duterte.

“Naa sa memorandum circular nga ipahamutang ang mga ma-displace, dili lang kay idiritso og clear,” said Arce.

Arce expects that these vendors will not go back to their previous areas since they have been given relocation.

Arce said that Tabo sa Banay on P. Gullas Street is the area chosen for the relocation where vendors must only sell from the two feet by two feet space allotted to them. Gullas is not a busy street.

Accessories vendors can use the space from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Those who still want to sell their products beyond 6 p.m. must transfer to A. Borromeo Street to give way for the food vendors who start selling at that time.

“This will be the food court during the night and during the day, katong mga accessories (vendors) ang naa,” said Arce.

The vendors who were not regulated are those who did not comply with the policy. Those are the May 2016 unregistered voters of Cebu City.

Arce said that some street vendors are present in some roads because they are still looking for a relocation site.

“I hope you give time to the LGU sa pagbuhat niana kay panginabuhian man gud ni atong gihisgutan,” she said.

Edwin Taboada, who had a “bairan” spot in Osmeña Boulevard, was among those who transferred at the back of the food sellers of P. Gullas Street.

He said that he is hoping that they could still go back to their previous spot but if this is instruction of President Rodrigo Duterte, they have no choice but to follow.

“Ang amo lang diri, maytag tagaan mi bisag mga duha ka semana o one month lang ba na makabalik mi sa among pwesto para lang sa pasko,” said Taboada.

He also admitted that he is expecting to have fewer customers now since the spot allotted to them is “quite hidden.”

Meanwhile, accessories vendor Mariam Pelicano who used to have a spot at Osmeña Boulevard, said that she is fine with the relocation.

“At least naa gihapon mi panginabuhian,” Pelicano said.

Since P. Gullas Street is prone to flood during rainy season, she said that they will just look for a way to secure their feet from the dirty water produced by the flood.

The sidewalk vendors are given until noon today to vacate their respective spots or be included in the massive clearing operation.

Meanwhile, the Department of the Interior and Local Government-7 has clarified that the agency has not yet declared any local government unit fully compliant with the presidential directive on the pre-assessment on road clearing compliance.

DILG-7 Director Leocadio Trovela said the actual assessment on all LGUs will be conducted only after the 60-day deadline, which falls today, September 29.

“As stated in the DILG MC-121-2019, being fully compliant is not just about conducting road clearing operations in primary and secondary roads,” Trovelo said in a press statement.

Based on the memorandum, an LGU should enact or revisit ordinances related to road clearing and banning of illegal construction, prepare an inventory of roads within their jurisdiction, develop and implement displacement strategies, and cause the rehabilitation of recovered public roads.

In the meantime, Trovela said, field officers have been conducting pre-assessment to discuss with the LGUs the status of the implementation of the DILG MC 2019-121 and provide assistance to the LGUs particularly on the remaining measures to be taken such as road-clearing, reclaiming roads, and road rehabilitation.

LGUs submit a report on their compliance on a weekly basis to the DILG Regional Offices (ROs) which consolidate and submit the same to the DILG Central Office, particularly the Bureau of Local Government Supervision (BLGS).

Hence, the data on the national summary of compliance with the MC is only based on “what is reported by the LGU” and is subject to validation by an assessment team from the DILG. — JMD (FREEMAN)

PROBE SIDEWALK VENDORS
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