PROBE to help barangays in road clearing operations
Mary Ruth R. Malinao (The Freeman) - February 19, 2020 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — The Prevention, Restoration, Order, Beautification, and Enhancement (PROBE) team is providing assistance to the barangays in Cebu City in the conduct of road clearing operations.

PROBE head Raquel Arce said that Barangay Ermita was the first to avail of their assistance during their road clearing operation yesterday.

Arce said the barangays sought the assistance of the city’s demolition team because they lack equipment and manpower.

“Di mana mapasagdan sa syudad kay the barangay is under the city,” Arce said.

Arce urged the barangays who have yet to schedule their road clearing operations to conduct a public hearing first.

She said during the public hearing, the constituents must be informed about the reason of the road clearing operations and make them understand, give them ample time to prepare, and tell them up to what area will the clearing be undertaken.

Aside from PROBE personnel, Ermita officials were also assisted by the personnel from the Police Station 5. Arce said Barangays Suba and Pasil would also need their assistance because both barangays have plenty of sidewalk vendors that are expected to be affected by the road clearing operations.

The Department of the Interior and Local Government-7 earlier said that the barangays may enlist the help of the city government if they find it hard to comply with the road clearing requirement.

Attorney Ian Lucero, chief of the Local Government Monitoring and Evaluation Division at DILG-7, said there is a process that allows the barangay captains to seek Cebu City Legal Office’s help on the matter.

Lucero was responding to the concerns raised by some barangays that have difficulty complying with road clearing memorandum.

In Cebu City, Association of Barangay Councils president Franklyn Ong said that houses or establishments encroaching the roads are the biggest challenge, especially in places with informal settlers or subdivisions.

Lucero said that the punong barangays are required to submit reports to the DILG central office of their compliance to the memorandum. The DILG validation team will check the report.

 “This is what we have told them that all their efforts should be reflected in their report. Because clearing is not an easy task considering the permanent structures that may be affected. So they (barangays) can ask assistance from the city government,” Lucero earlier said.

Under the DILG memorandum, the LGUs, including barangays, have to show significant results within 75 calendar days or two and a half months, which is counted starting February 16.  FPL (FREEMAN)

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