Bello’s tirades discredit the efforts and commitment of the city government’s employees.
Question: What do Leody de Guzman, Walden Bello and Luke Espiritu have in common?
Answer: They are all running in the coming May polls – de Guzman for president; Bello for vice president and Espiritu for senator, without the slightest chance of winning.
Question: So why then run for the elections when the probability of Leni Robredo passing the bar exam should she decide to do a retake is higher than them getting even five percent of the voters’ approval?
Answer: To add to the demolition job being waged against the opponents of the candidates they are truly supporting.
Let’s get it straight, the groups behind these three candidates – then Yellows and the Left, are supporting the candidacy of Robredo and her ticket. They don’t have to win nor even dream of garnering decent votes. What is important is that they add voices to the criticisms and attacks being hurled against the most formidable opponents their candidates are facing – former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. and his running mate, Davao City mayor Inday Sara Duterte.
With them running, the opposition gains extra minutes in debates sponsored by the Commission on Elections, extra venues and speeches, media interviews and additional campaign activities all in furtherance of their demolition job against their target candidates.
In the last edition of Comelec’s Pilipinas Debates 2022, designated batter Bello aimed straight at the presidential daughter. However, his two-minute of fame immediately vanished as his supposed homerun hitter turned into a foul ball. His allegation that Davao City Coastal Road Project was grossly overpriced which sent the Pinklawans into jubilation thinking they uncovered a new bomb against the BBM’s running mate, was immediately crushed.
In the said debate Bello averred that should he get elected as vice president (which we know will never happen), “he would focus on cleansing, cleaning up Davao,” as he made mention of the city’s 36.8-kilometer coastal highway road which reportedly cost P1 million.
Unfortunately for Bello and his fellow demolition men, he missed one serious aspect when he made his allegation – that is to check on his facts.
According to the Department of Public Works and Highways, the Davao City Coastal Road Project is a composite highway with larger components, and thus, “very different” from ordinary highways.
Secretary Roger Mercado said that this road, one of the agency’s flagship projects in Davao, conceptualized to solve the burgeoning traffic along Cotabato – Davao Road starting from Toril area going to the city proper, will serve as a bypass road, a coastal shore protection and breakwater that protects the city from sea wave actions, water surges and shore erosion.
In fact, Mercado said this project was put to a test during the last surge in 2020, when residents in nearby subdivisions were spared from the surge effect.
DPWH also gave the technical description of the project which would justify its P19.6 billion tag price, or about P532.6 million per kilometer and
According to the DPWH, the project covers the construction of a four-lane (15.40-meter road width), 10mm thick asphalt pavement with anti-rutting additives; construction of a bicycle lane; construction of a curb, gutter and sidewalk. The entire width of the road, including the off-carriageway, is 25.54 meters or almost equivalent to an eight-lane road.
Additional structures were also constructed on embankments with an average height of around 6.50 meters, complete with drainage and separation geotextiles, “therefore, a significant volume of earthworks or burrow materials was required. On one side, geotubes were installed for the reclamation as protection; Class I and Class II rocks were also put in place with hexapods, seawall and wave deflector to reduce the intensity of wave actions which is prevalent in the area during “Amihan” season. On the other side, grouted riprap slope protection was constructed over Class III rocks.
Other structures constructed include detour/access road, metal guardrails, construction of roundabouts at Times Beach and Roxas Avenue, concrete fence including posts, roadway lighting, plant boxes and drainage structures using high density polyethylene pipes for high level of impermeability.
Other than these civil work components, the DPWH said the agency also had to deal with the difficulty of acquiring road right of way, “considering the numerous informal settlers around the project, the several resorts along the Talomo coastlines, and several institutional structures which will be affected by, but necessary for the project.”
Aside from Bello overpricing himself, he failed to check on the other components included in the project. As a result, he got slapped right in the face when the Davao City council declared him persona non grata, barring his entry from the King City of the South.
A resolution authored by City Councilor Danilo Dayanghirang said that Bello’s “malicious tirades” discredit the efforts and commitment of the city government’s employees.
“Bello’s persistent attacks will debilitate Davao City’s economic recovery efforts, especially in promoting the city’s tourism and investment opportunities to the local and international scene, and ultimately affect Davao City’s reputable governance to the public in general,” the resolution read.
“As we condemn Walden Bello’s acts, we also vehemently declare that he is not welcome to enter the borders, and the entire territorial jurisdiction of Davao City,” the resolution added.
But would that make him and his colleagues stop? I don’t think so. They have a mission to do for the coming elections – demolish whoever comes in the way of the Pinklaw candidates.
But meantime, with the opening of the Davao City Coastal Road project to pedestrians, Davao City residents are now flocking to the City Esplanades/Boardwalks, as they discover a new haven for biking, walking and other fitness activities.