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3rd bridge to ease traffic in Cebu, Mactan

I realized that we are already in the midst of February and a friend of mine from Iloilo City wanted to know “Who will take care of the power needs of 64,000 household and business consumers in Iloilo City when the franchise of Panay Electric Co. (PECO) expired in January 2019?” This was a text question sent to me by a good friend who pointed out (per the franchise bill approved by the Senate and the House of Representatives that is now pending for signature of President Duterte into law) PECO will be given a provisional authority for two years at most while transitioning the service to MORE. At this point we will wait whether or not Pres. Duterte signed this bill into law and then we will update you.

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Last Thursday, the private concessionaire for the Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway (CCLEx) has secured a P19-billion loan facility with six local banks, which will partially fund the construction of the bridge project in the Visayas. The CCLEC said in a statement it has inked a 15-year omnibus loan and security agreement with Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. (RCBC), Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), Robinsons Bank Corp., Union Bank of the Philippines, Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI), and Security Bank Corp. No wonder certain people were talking that this bridge would be delayed because of lack of funds.

Metro Pacific Tollways Corp. (MPTC) said, “Construction completion of the (CCLEX) project is assured now that it has secured a P19-billion syndicated loan facility.” Accordingly all the 21 piles of the main bridge’s Tower 2 have been erected. These forms part of the foundation of this bridge. The CCLEX is a P30-billion, 8.5-kilometer toll bridge that would link Mactan (Cordova) Island to Mainland Cebu. This project is slated to open by the Year 2021.

It is expected that when the CCLEX is finished within three years, traffic from Cebu City to Mactan would ease greatly as motorist would rather use the CCLEX Bridge directly to the Mactan Cebu International Airport. Last Sunday I drove to Cordova for the blessing of the new house in Ajoya, Cordova from Cebu City, which took me an hour to reach that place on a lazy Sunday traffic. On my return trip, it was less than an hour because traffic was lighter. My son invested in Ajoya Subdivision because he is a PAL pilot and had to be near Mactan Airport for that is his life. But he also knew that after the CCLEX Bridge is finished, his Cordova house would only be less than a 30-minute ride to our current house.

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Last week, we wrote that Sen. Sonny Angara reported to the City of Mandaue that his bill to make Mandaue City a lone legislative district has been approved. I then questioned the motive of Sen. Angara and Rep. Jonas Cortes that they apparently approved this bill without consideration to what would happen to the Sixth District since Lapu-Lapu City has also become a lone legislative district because it would mean that what’s left of the Sixth is Cordova and Consolacion, which are at least 20 kilometers apart.

What happened instead is I got a lengthy but nasty response from an Atty. Jamaal R. Calipayan, the chief of staff of Rep. Jonas Cortes. Towards the end of his lengthy discourse he said, “I guess the real serious flaw that we need to talk about here is not about redistricting, because clearly there is none, only a creation of a lone district, separating it from an already existing one, the real flaw would probably be why a veteran journalist like yourself would try to humiliate himself in public by talking about something he barely knows about.”

Then he added, “Secondly, distance has never been a hindrance in the creation of legislative districts, contiguity has never been a legal or constitutional issue. This is why the framers of the 1987 Constitution placed the phrase “as far as practicable” next to the description that legislative districts are contiguous under Article VI, Section 5 par. 3 thereof. To arrogate upon your readers that the authors of this bill in the senate and lower house did not think this properly because this law might inconvenience the future representatives of the Sixth would be tantamount to saying lets just not eat because pooping is so inconvenient.”

See how arrogant is this so-called chief of staff of Rep. Cortes who blatantly declared that I humiliated myself! Well Atty. in my 30 years as a journalist you are the first ever to insult me… and yes I even reprinted your insult. But it doesn’t change my stand that in redistricting Mandaue City to be a lone district, your bosses never cared what would happen to what’s left of the Sixth District, proof that politicians only cared for themselves and not for the common good of the Sixth District. Someone ought to fix the Sixth District so as not to inconvenience the Congressman of that district.

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Email: vsbobita@gmail.com

Credit belongs to : www.philstar.com

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