Cebu News

Garcia assures Mananga river desilting won’t affect settlers

Kristin De Dios - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines — Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia has assured the cities of Cebu and Talisay that the provincial government is taking necessary steps to mitigate any adverse effects on residents living near the riverbanks from the ongoing desilting efforts in Mananga river.

The governor made the assurance during a meeting with Cebu City acting Mayor Raymond Alvin Garcia, Talisay City Mayor Samsam Gullas, and some barangay captains last Monday night at the Capitol.

Department of Public Works and Highways regional director Ernesto Gregorio Jr., MCWD general manager Edgar Donoso, and Engr. Mary Ann Bueno, chief of the Environmental Impact Assessment Section of Environmental Management Bureau Region 7 were also present in the meeting.

The meeting centered on the ongoing desilting activities along the Mananga river, a major water source for Metropolitan Cebu Water District (MCWD) traversing the jurisdictions of the cities of Cebu and Talisay.

The governor has initiated desilting activities along the river to address the depleting water supply for MCWD brought by the El Niño in Cebu. By desilting and dredging the area, these will help uncover water springs which had been blocked by heavy siltation through the years.

The desilting of the river also ensures that pools are avoided and water will flow freely to the Jaclupan facility of MCWD.

During the rainy days, dredging the riverbeds also avoids flooding. The initiative of the provincial government aims to ensure a stable water supply for MCWD as a proactive measure, particularly during the hotter months.

In a post by Sugbo News, Capitol’s official social media page, Garcia outlined plans in the meeting to define the riverbed’s size, both downstream and upstream, in compliance with easement rules.

The governor ordered Capitol engineers and contractors to initially put markers along the river to define its easement and varying riverbed size. She also warned the contractors not to commit any environmental violations in the process.

Last May 18, Garcia expressed her concern about the heavy siltation in Mananga river over the years adding that water cannot flow as they are being blocked by heavy silt.

“The water is trapped underneath because there has been absolutely no desiltation all these decades,” said Garcia. — (FREEMAN)

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