Village chair abides by Rama's Singapore-like vision

·6 min read

A VILLAGE chair in Cebu City is setting his focus on infrastructure projects, such as road concreting and widening, as well as procuring additional garbage trucks in line with Mayor Michael Rama's objective to make Cebu City a "Singapore Like" city.

Sambag 2 barangay captain Ryan Aznar said the barangay has four garbage trucks, but only three can be used, including the two newly purchased garbage vehicles, as the other one needs repair.

"Under my administration, duha na ka garbage truck ang na purchase no gikan gihapon na sa siyudad nga pundo ilang gigahin para sa barangay. Duna tay upat ka unit, ang usa guba, ang usa naayo na, unya ang duha bag-o pero nahitabo gyud na nga ang barangay wala na gyu'y garbage truck tungod kay nangaguba tanan, pero gipa-ayo nato na og hinay-hinay. Di man sad ta dagha'g kwarta nga mapaayo dayon nato kay personal man na ang pag-paayo nato, dili man na ma-charge sa MOOE (Maintenance and Other

Operating Expenses) so hinay-hinay lang ta ug paayo," Aznar said.

(Under my administration, two garbage trucks have already been purchased using the fund of the city for the barangay. We have four units, of which one needs repair, while the other is already operational after being fixed, but it happened that all the garbage trucks bogged down and we slowly had it repaired using our own personal resources because we don't have an emergency fund in the barangay for the repair, which cannot be charged under the MOOE.)

Sambag 2, which is one of the barangays located at the center of Cebu City, was tasked by Mayor Michael Rama to help the city become like Singapore.

Aznar said the mayor's ambitious plan does not put more emphasis on the development of Cebu City, but rather on the good cleaning practices and procedures being done in Singapore.

Aznar said the good traits of Singaporeans are what the mayor wanted to follow in Cebu.

"Not the Singapore per se but some of their good practices there will be brought here, like for example peace and order, cleanliness that is the most important thing we can do," added Aznar.

Aznar said that as part of their compliance to the mayor's order, the barangay has already started cleaning the streets, especially major roads.

"Mao na atong giuna ang pagpang-limpyo gyud sa atong siyudad kay mao man sad ni siya'y epekto kon nganong naa ning baha, so we have to clean gyud whatever obstruction dinha sa atong waterways. Kon ari sad ka sa atong roads kanang mga eyesore atong limpyohon, mao nay pasabot sa Singapore Like," the village chair said.

(We prioritize the cleaning of our city because this is the reason why there are floods, so we have to remove obstruction in our waterways as well as the so-called eyesores from the roads. This is the meaning of Singapore-like).

Aznar said the goal of the mayor to become "Singapore-like" is difficult to achieve if the residents would not cooperate.

Aznar hoped that the ordinance concerning the dumping of garbage would be strictly implemented for the city's plan to succeed.

One of the places prioritized by the barangay in their cleanup program is B. Rodriguez Street, where the mayor also plans to establish a night market from 5 p.m. to 5 a.m. of the following day.

The plan is being studied by the City Government's Garbo Asenso Sumbanan Alyansa (Gasa) Board.

"What the mayor instructed us is to clean the B. Rodriguez area of obstruction ug kining mga vendors nga naa ra sa sidewalk, ang iya gyud gusto is to reclaim back the sidewalk nga modaku siya para hamugaway ang pag-agi sa mga pedestrians," Aznar said.

(What the mayor instructed us is to clean the B. Rodriguez area of ​ obstruction and these vendors who are on the sidewalk. What he really wants is to reclaim back the sidewalk to make it wider to make it easier for pedestrians to pass by).

The sidewalk vendors, especially those around 20 individuals who own stalls in the area such as eatery, who will be affected by the demolition, will be given priority by the City Government to get slots for the night market activity.

Aznar said negotiations will be done first between the lot occupants and the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center (VSMMC) before the relocation takes place.

Also to be affected by the "Singapore-like" program are Sambag 2 residents who are living within the three-meter easement zone of Guadalupe river.

The village chair, however, said the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office has not consulted them yet about the matter, saying around 50 structures along the riverbanks would be affected once the demolition pushes through.

Aznar, meanwhile, announced the expansion of its old health center building, which got P5 million funding from Senator Miguel Zubiri.

However, the construction works stopped recently due to fund shortage.

"That building kana dugay nana siya 1990's pa na. Nakakuha man ta kang Senador Zubiri worth P5 million is not only a health center sa taas ana is a daycare. Girenovate na lately sa DPWH (Department of Public Works and Highways). Unfortunately, nakuwang ang P5 million kay gi extend mana siya gi extend ang building so ang ubos ang health center. I'm just waiting sa funds from the city or sa barangay gyud na nga developmental fund that would be next year," Aznar said.

(That building has been around since the 1990's. Since we got P5 million from Senator Zubiri, the project does not only include a health center, but also a daycare upstairs. It was renovated recently by the DPWH but unfortunately, the P5 million funding was not enough due to the building's expansion. I'm just waiting for the funds from the city or the barangay's developmental fund that would be next year.)

Aznar said the barangay continues to provide healthcare services at the covered court, which serves as temporary health center until the new building is done.

The building will include a dental clinic and a health center on the ground floor and a daycare center on the second and third floors.

As for the watchers of VSMMC patients who waited outside due to the hospital's one watcher per patient policy, Aznar said there is still available space in Barangay Sambag 2 that can be used to put up a building where watchers can stay while waiting for their patients.

But he said this idea will depend on the discretion of Governor Gwendolyn Garcia and Mayor Mike Rama.

Aznar also warned the residents to park their cars properly so as not to obstruct traffic especially when there is an emergency.

He said he is planning to coordinate with the Cebu City Transportation Office regarding the deputization of some of their tanods to apprehend traffic violators. (BBT, TPT)