Carreta village chief optimistic 2 sitios cleared of garbage before Christmas

CARRETA barangay captain Marciano Ando expressed optimism that all the garbage that pile up in sitios Kalapukan and Cemper Fidelis would already be retrieved during their last remaining cleanups on December 10 and 17.

Ando hoped that the creek traversing the two sitios would already be cleared of waste before the Christmas celebration on December 25.

The barangay captain said during the “Kumusta Kap” program of SunStar Cebu on November 30 that they initiated the cleanup drive in the area last month after some residents there complained that they could no longer go out of their houses without wearing their rain boots due to the garbage in their surroundings.

During their first day of cleanup on November 26, the barangay officials had difficulty retrieving the garbage and other debris from the creek as some portions of the canal are covered with houses, enabling them to take out only 30 percent of the total amount of waste.

"Naglisod gyud ang atong mga naglimpyo. Duna tay upat ka mga tawo nga atong gipasawom sa ilawom sa mga balay nga dunay daghang basura kay gipang patungan naman sa mga balay, nanga alihan na," said Ando.

(Our cleaners were having a hard time. We had four people to dive to retrieve the garbage under the houses that blocked the flow of water.)

The barangay officials then agreed during their council session to hold three more cleanups every Saturday to take out the remaining trash from the creek to ensure the smooth flow of water.

“That is the reason why the floodwater is blocked every time it rains,” Ando said, referring to the garbage.

During their second cleanup on December 3, there were still plenty of garbage that left uncollected.

Ando is hoping that the Cebu City Government would lend them their heavy equipment to remove the remaining trash.

“I kept sending letters of request since during the time of former mayor Edgardo Labella and until now, during the term of Mayor Mike Rama, but still no action was taken. We met with the mayor a few days ago and we talked about it and he said he would assign somebody to send the equipment, but until now, he still hasn't done anything. We drafted another letter which we plan to deliver to his office personally by tomorrow and I hope that our request will be acted upon,” Ando said in Cebuano, adding that their cleanup program is in support of the mayor’s vision for Cebu City to become like Singapore.

Barangay Carreta has four sitios that will be affected by the clearing of the three-meter easement zone along the riverbanks, namely, Kalapukan, Cemper Fidelis, Malinao and Ponce 1, where around 60 houses are expected to be demolished.

The water that flows in Barangay Carreta creek traverses through the river along the Blessed Sacrament Parish in Barangay Tinago and exits in Pier 3.

Meanwhile, around 200 residents living inside Chinese cemetery in the barangay are expected to be demolished as the area would be developed into a heritage park.

The barangay has five cemeteries, of which the two are occupied by illegal settlers.

It is known that the Chinese cemetery has 15 old museums that will be preserved by the management.

"There are many people who take pictures of the museums that are still there so these will not be destroyed," said Ando.

Ando admitted that some criminal personalities had been making the cemetery as their hideout.

The village chief did not discount the possibility that the guards in the Chinese cemetery are in connivance with the residents or just afraid to implement strict security measures for fear of getting harmed, as they just let people enter the gate without searching them even during the nighttime.

Ando boasted that during his tenure as the barangay captain, he has done many projects, especially the paving of the roads in the interior portion of the barangay.

Barangay Carreta also bought a dump truck recently to add to the existing two garbage trucks.

It also received an ambulance from the Cebu City Government under the administration of Mayor Rama. (BBT, TPT)