Last month, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) spokesperson and Undersecretary, Jonathan Malaya clarified that most local government units at that time were not yet fully compliant with the DILG’s two-month Road Clearing operation’s end goals. These goals consist of a bit are not limited to; listing all of an LGU’s constituent roads, planning and repairing recovered roads and developing and executing displacement strategies.
In order to validate the efforts of the local government units, the DILG had set-up a team consisting of different government officials with some from the DILG itself and others from other concerned government departments. These are representatives from the Bureau of Fire Protection, Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, the Philippine National Police, and some non-government organizations.
It's been tough but it seems that many LGUs had managed
As a follow-up to the above, the DILG Undersecretary, Mr. Epicamo Densing III has said in an interview a couple of days ago that these validations were expected to be completed last week and these were to be handed over to the DILG Secretary Eduardo Año.
DILG Undersecretary, Professor Epicamo Densing III
In a statement, Densing said that despite the really tight 60-day deadline, most LGUs were able to address the obstructed roads and sidewalks spread all throughout the country. He also said that the validation will be based on the goals of the road clearing operations. For those who didn’t comply, well let’s just say that there will be a reckoning of sorts.
Mr. Densing also explained that both the DILG and President Rodrigo Duterte himself will, of course, be seeking “substantial compliance of the order” and after being validated, there are still many things to be discussed.
As a next step, Mr. Densing said that LGU’s should place programs to keep the roads of Metro Manila clean and obstruction-free.
While it seems to some that the job’s done, it’s actually just the beginning. As the Undersecretary had said, the next big thing for LGUs is their ability to maintain these already cleared roads from being occupied and used improperly once again by unscrupulous individuals.
So let’s just hope that the concerned barangay and other local government officials will be able to keep up what they started. After all, these reclaimed roads, from the smallest back alley to the humblest sidewalk up to the widest thoroughfares, all of these are crucial veins of the Philippine economy. And surely, no one wants their veins to get clogged up.
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