Commentary: 23rd Yen highways cementing project a landmark in PGMA's infra program
By Bong Pedalino
SAN FRANCISCO, Southern Leyte (19 April) -- The newly-completed road concreting project traversing the main Panaon island highway here from Liloan to San Ricardo towns, including the two other similar packages in the pacific area up to Abuyog, Leyte, was a "landmark in the infra-structure development program of the President," according to Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Secretary Manuel Bonoan.
"This is the infra-structure development program that we need to pursue relentlessly in order to sustain the economic gains of our country today," Secretary Bonoan stressed before a huge crowd at the municipal gym here Wednesday, April 18, during the inauguration program for the finished road.
The DPWH Boss said he had come to the province five years ago, while he was in the process of seeking financing program from the Japanese government then.
"Kaya nakita ko po ang kalagayan ng ating kalsada five years ago. Ngayon, ako po ay natutuwa at mai-i-report ko na sa mahal na Pangulo na 'yun pong kalsada na sira-sira at halos hindi mada-anan noong araw, sa tulong ng ating mahal na Pangulo, sa ating pag-unlad ng ating ekonomiya, naisagawa na at napakaganda na ang kalsada ngayon," Sec. Bonoan said.
Earlier in his talk, Bonoan said he was instructed by the President to come and represent her in the activity as she could not personally attend due to the health condition of the First Gentleman who was still recuperating from a heart surgery last week.
He said he was already aware about this inauguration during the Holy Week and shortly before the First Gentleman's sudden hospital confinement, as President Arroyo kept on reminding him at their meeting that he go with her in San Francisco for the opening of the concreted roads.
The DPWH Secretary was accompanied by Rep. Roger Mercado and several other guests, including Thailand Ambassador Asha Dvitiyananda and Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) Representative Floro Adviento, among other visitors when they arrived here 10:30 in the morning.
They were met by local officials led by San Francisco Mayor Lorraine Asares, San Ricardo Mayor Virginia Mejia, and DPWH officials headed by District Engineer Carlos Veloso.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held and a marker unveiled by the visiting guests assisted by local officials a few minutes after their arrival, then they proceeded to the municipal gymnasium for the inauguration program.
The Liloan to San Ricardo road concreting project stretches 40.65 kilometers. It was labeled Contract Package III in the 23rd yen loan arterial road project costing P1,010,701,422.95.
The project's Contractor was Italian-Thai Development Public Company, Ltd for the duration of 1,087 calendar days, from May 17, 2004 up to May 8, 2007. (PIA-Southern Leyte) [top]