Old structures in Manila need checking for quality, safety — Solidum

Marje Pelayo   •   July 9, 2019   •   1215

Courtesy : Thebureauasia.com

MANILA, Philippines – Science and Technology Undersecretary Renato Solidum has recommended placing under quality assessment all old structures in the city of Manila.

This is in reaction to Manila Mayor Francisco Domagoso’s remarks about the city’s lack of a concrete risk reduction management plan or a detailed hazard map.

The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) Director said the local government of Manila should primarily address the city’s disaster preparedness and capability ahead of the ‘Big One’ or the magnitude 7.8 earthquake that the West Valley Fault may generate in the future.

“Tingnan kung ano ba ang kalidad ng mga bahay at gusali (Check the quality of the houses and buildings),” Solidum noted.

“Ang Manila maraming luma. Marami ding informal settlement at marami diyan non-engineered ang mga bahay (Manila has a lot of old (structures), a lot of informal settlement and most of them are non-engineered houses),” he added.

Based on a report from the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), the city of Manila is a ‘total failure’ when it comes to disaster resilience or its capability to respond in natural disasters and other hazards.

Solidum explained that Manila’s base being a coastal city is prone to liquefaction because it is near Manila Bay.

“Ang kaibahan ng Quezon city sa Manila ay matigas ang foundation ng Quezon city. (Ang) Manila (ay) hindi, kundi malambot (The difference between Quezon City and Manila is that Quezon City has a solid foundation. With Manila, no. It has a yielding base),” Solidum said.

The Quezon City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (QCRRMC) has received the 2018 Gawad Kalasag Award as the Best Local DRRMC under the Highly Urbanized Category.

They have assigned six district evacuation sites other than Quezon City circle.

According to the head of the QCDRRMO Myke Marasigan, they have included in their contingency plan the color-coded alert level to be able to immediately respond to earthquake situations.

“If the magnitude and the epicenter is near Quezon city, for example 5.5 below, then we could always trigger the yellow alert meaning on-call, standby and do damage assessment immediately,” Marasigan explained.

The QCDRRMO also conducts regular earthquake drills to prepare the residents for potential ground shaking.

The city government is making sure of preparing all barangays since they cannot rescue everyone at the same time.

“They will be ready as an individual, ibig sabihin meron kang (meaning you have your) ‘Go Bag’ ready or disaster kits na sinasabi natin,” Marasigan said.

“Susunod niyan as a family kung nagusap-usap na ba tayo pag halimbawa lumildol magkakahiwalay tayo saan tayo mag-mi-meetup? (Next is the family. Have you set up a plan that in case of an earthquake and you’ve been separated from one another, where should you meet?),” he added.

According to Solidum, the city of Manila is able to prepare its residents but it is important that they do it systematically. – with details from Rey Pelayo.

#WalangPasok: Classes, gov’t work in Manila suspended ahead of Undas break

Robie de Guzman   •   October 30, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The city government of Manila on Wednesday announced the suspension of classes in all levels in private and public schools, and work in government offices on Oct. 31 ahead of the observance of Undas weekend.

“There is a need to give ample time to travel to and from the different regions nationwide to celebrate with their families,” read an executive order signed by Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso.

But workers in agencies whose functions involve the delivery of basic and health services are still required to continue operations and services during the long weekend.

“However, the Manila Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office, the Department of Engineering and Public Works, the Department of Public Services, the Manila Traffic and Parking Bureau, the Manila Health Department, the six City Hospitals, and agencies whose functions involve the delivery of basic and health services, preparedness and/or response to disasters and calamities, and/or the performance of other vital services shall continue operations and render the necessary services,” the order read.

Mayor Isko said the order is effective immediately.

Revenue from parking fees more than triple in Manila

Marje Pelayo   •   October 14, 2019

City of Manila Mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso

MANILA, Philippines – After his 100 days in office, Mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso flexed on the increase in the city government’s revenue with major contributions coming from collected parking fees.

This, despite the limited spaces that the city government allotted for private parking in response to the directive of President Rodrigo Duterte of clearing public roads of illegally parked vehicles.

According to the result of the Department of the Interior and Local Government’s (DILG) validation, local government units (LGUs) in terms of compliance to the President’s directive, the city of Manila received ‘medium compliance’ rating in road clearing.

Based on records of the Manila PIO, the city was able to collect P54.4 million from parking fees alone within the period of July to September 2019.

This amount is way higher than that of last year which is only P12.5 million.

“Nagtanggal pa tayo ng mga parkable space. Dapat kung nagtanggal tayo ng parkable space, dapat mas bumaba (We limited the areas allowed for parking. If that’s the case, then collections should have been reduced also),” Domagoso said.

“Iyon pong mga ibinabayad ninyo sa mga panahon ngayon, iyan ay talagang papapasukin sa kaban ng bayan (What you are paying will be sent to the city government’s treasury),” he added.

Manila charges P20 for the first 3 hours of parking for light vehicles with P15 additional fee for every succeeding hour.

For medium-sized vehicles like vans and delivery trucks, the city government charges an initial amount of P30 pesos and an additional P20 for every succeeding hour.

For heavy vehicles like buses and 10-wheeled trucks, the charge is P60 for the initial three hours and an additional P40 pesos for every succeeding hour.

The deadline for the road clearing operation already lapsed last month but the city government opted to carry on with the operations to clear the roads from obstructions. – MNP (with details from Harlene Delgado)

3,810 tons of garbage collected from Manila Bay cleanup ops – MMDA

Robie de Guzman   •   September 10, 2019

A joint clean-up activity on an area of Manila Bay in Navotas City led by the MMDA, DENR, DPWH, Coast Guard, BJMP, Navotas City LGU, Brgy. officials as part of the bay’s rehabilitation, August 19, 2019 | MMDA

MANILA, Philippines – More than 3,000 tons of garbage have been collected from the coastline and drainage system discharging to Manila Bay since the government began its rehabilitation in January, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) reported.

MMDA’s Manila Bay rehabilitation report revealed that from January 7 to August 31, they were able to collect garbage, water hyacinth and silt weighing a total of 3,810 tons from the following areas:

• 2,639 cubic meters / 749.72 tons of garbage from Manila Baywalk and other tributaries

• 2,594.34 cubic meters / 737.12 tons of garbage and water hyacinth removed from Baseco beach area, lagoon, and aplaya

• 3,174.5 cubic meters / 901.85 tons of water hyacinth/garbage from Pasig River and San Juan River area

• 5,005.5 cubic meters / 1,422.17 tons of silt from esteros and drainage laterals discharging to Manila Bay

MMDA Chairman Danilo Lim said they expect to collect more garbage from Manila Bay due to heavy rains in the past few days.

“Garbage has accumulated in Manila Bay after the heavy rains but the rehabilitation of Manila Bay never stops. We are inviting more volunteers to help in our clean-up drive held every Saturday in the Baywalk and Baseco areas,” Lim said.

“The government still has a long way to go in the rehabilitation of Manila Bay but we are on the right track towards restoring the beauty and improve Manila Bay’s quality of water,” said Lim.

The Manila Bay cleanup organized by the MMDA was joined by some 18,457 volunteers from January to August this year.

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