Cebu City village chair bares housing program, busted street lights

AROUND 100 families will benefit from the free housing program of the Cebu City Government in Barangay Lorega San Miguel.

Lorega San Miguel Barangay Captain Fritzgerald Herrera said during the "Kumusta Kap" program hosted by reporter Benjie Talisic of of SunStar Cebu last Wednesday, September 28, 2022, that two five-story residential buildings are designed for those residents whose houses were damaged by the fire or dismantled due to the development in the area and those living along the riverbanks who were displaced by the city's flood control program.

The buildings worth P115 million with 100 housing units were initiated by former mayor Edgardo Labella, the local government of Lorega San Miguel and Cebu Land Masters Inc.

The medium-rise buildings (MRBs) were built by Cebu Landmasters Inc. as part of the company’s compliance with the required Balanced Housing Development Program under the Urban Development and Housing Act of 1992.

"Naa man gud balaod ron nga kining mga developer ug mga subdivision kon mag tukod ug condominiums under the law, they are required to set aside a certain percentage of their project and luckily under the stewardship of Mayor Ed Labella that time, nakakuha ta og significant funds from the national government through the implementation of such loan, unya ang nitugon sa maong panawagan mao ang Cebu Landmasters Incorporated," Herrera said.

(There is now a law requiring the developers of a subdivision and condominiums to set aside a certain percentage of their project and luckily, under the stewardship of Mayor Ed Labella that time, we were able to get funding from the national government through a loan and the Cebu Landmasters Inc. responded to our calls (being the winning bidder)).

"Sa pagkakaron, ongoing ang pakig-alayon nato sa Cebu City Government kay sila man gyud ang implementing arm of the program through the Division for the Welfare of the Urban Poor (DWUP) sa pag-ila og mga beneficiaries. Dili ni matawag nga exclusive only for Lorega San Miguel ang maka benepisyo ani only a percentage lang ana, although priority ang Lorega pero dili gyud mga 100 percent nga ma atoa na," Herrera added.

(Currently, we are negotiating with the Cebu City Government since they are the implementing arm of the program through the Division for the Welfare of the Urban Poor (DWUP) in identifying the beneficiaries. This project is not exclusive for Lorega San Miguel residents but only a percentage of it, although our priority is Lorega but we cannot claim it 100 percent).

The 100 housing units, however, are not even enough to accommodate the more than 15,000 families living within the three-meter easement zone of the rivers that will be displaced by the city's flood-control program.

The beneficiaries are also not allowed to sell in their condo units nor cook using the liquefied petroleum gas (LPGs) as the CLI has encouraged the residents to instead use electric stove which the realty developer had already installed in every housing unit.

The ground floor of the building is left vacant and this will be used by the barangay for their activities.

The buildings are called green as they use solar panels to generate electricity.

The barangay captain said they are also planning to construct a three-story building for their health center, which they plan to finish by next year.

Herrera also mentioned during the Kumusta Kap program a portion of Imus Road that remains dark during the evening due to busted street lights.

He said the City Government had already replaced some of the damaged street lights in portions of Imus road that were under the jurisdiction of barangays T. Padilla and Day-as but they stopped the repair works and did not reach Lorega San Miguel as they ran out of supply of street lights.

"Few weeks ago, usa gyud ni sa among gi-lobby ni Mayor Mike Rama nga mabutangan na ug suga. In fact, the whole stretch of Imus ang walay suga. Ako gyud nang gipahingusgan ang problema lang kay natauran na gyud na ug suga pag-abot lang sa akong barangay, nahutdan sila ug supply sa suga," Herrera said.

(Few weeks ago, we lobbied to Mayor Mike Rama to install lights. In fact, the whole stretch of Imus was what I wanted to have street lights but the problem was that they ran out of supply upon reaching my barangay).

Herrera was hoping that the City Government would address the problem soon since the area is quiet dark in the evening and it poses dangers to pedestrians due to the absence of a pedestrian lane.

Herrera said he will talk again with Mayor Rama regarding the matter.

Herrera also mentioned about an ongoing construction of a second housing unit in his barangay intended for the fire victims from Sitio Acacia.

He also shared the previous waste reduction program of the barangay wherein they gave a kilo of rice to the residents who earn 100 points for collecting biodegradable wastes.

The beneficiaries will get 10 points for every one kilo of garbage collected and they have to collect at least 10 kilos of trash to get the rice.

The barangay is planning to tie up with the City Government for the second phase of the project.

Herrera said the biodegradable wastes will be processed in a compost bin for three months until it become a fertilizer.

He said the process has already been practiced in the mountain barangays. (BBT, TPT)