Public Works Secretary Mark Villar on Friday vowed to finish the flood-control project at Maysilo Circle in Mandaluyong City by the end of September after a mega-drainage project left untouched after three years under the Aquino administration caused floods and endangered local businesses.
“We have already spoken to the contractor. His commitment is by September. If the contractor cannot finish by September, he himself will be swimming in the flood,” Villar said on television.
The already stinking flood water around the Mandaluyong City Hall is caused by the three-year construction left unfinished by a contractor tasked by the Public Works department to construct and maintain Metro Manila’s mega-flood control program.
The flood water does not dissipate even on sunny days and has caused businesses around the area to shut down because of “record-low” losses due to floods.
Former Mandaluyong mayor Benhur Abalos had apprised the DPWH of the inconvenience caused by the project at least eight times since March 2013, to no avail.
Former Public Works secretary Rogelio Singson had promised residents that the department will do its best to finish the project by May this year “with a little more sacrifice,” but no improvement was made since he made that statement.
Dengue cases in Mandaluyong from January to September last year rose to 176 cases from 140 cases in the first nine months of 2014 as a result of the flooding.
“With the permission of the City government as well as the residents, we will be working on the project 24/7,” Singson said last February.
He revealed that all flood control programs of the government were transferred from the DPWH to the Metro Manila Development Authority, which did not have the equipment to implement the programs.
Villar, however, assured the public that temporary measures to ease the burden of residents and motorists are already being taken by the DPWH.
“The contractor committed to putting additional pumps. We will do the same to ease the flow of traffic,” he said.
“What happened was the drainage systems of other streets were finished so the flood water flowed faster and collected here. We can expect that at least, with the pumps, the flow will slow down until September 30 when the project will be finished,” he added.
One of the five big-ticket priority projects of the Aquino administration to solve flooding woes in the Metro, the P609-million Mandaluyong Main Drainage Project Phase 3 is just a stone’s throw away from the city hall at the corner of Maysilo Circle and San Francisco Street with around 54 percent of the project already completed as of last December according to the DPWH website.
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