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PIA Press Release
2006/10/05

Gov. Garcia bats for infra investments to speed up economy

Cebu City (5 October) -- Sharing President Arroyo's policy that infrastructure must be given equal priority to speed up the economy and lure more foreign investments into the country as emphasized in her State-of-the-Nation Address, Gov. Gwen Garcia bared 350 kms. of road have been asphalted and 41 bridges upgraded in various parts of the province.

Garcia said for the past two years, the province has spent P650M in the asphalting of provincial roads even in towns where she miserably lost while the road-cementing project is ongoing.

The government on the other hand, made the most comprehensive presentation of the strategic infrastructure projects in the five super regions to leaders of the business community and the private sector during a recent "Government Infrastructure Forum."

The forum was aimed at establishing possible avenues of collaboration between the government and private sector to fast-track the implementation of development initiatives outlined in the President's SONA.

In the field of education, Garcia said 200 classrooms have been built under her administration distributed in the six districts of Cebu. The upgrading of the district hospitals is currently ongoing as Garcia also said the district hospitals are fully equipped with medicines. All the barangay health workers (BHWs) are enrolled with the Government Service Insurance System and likewise have accident insurance benefits aside from being given BHW kits. The Province of Cebu is the only local government unit nationwide that has the highest enrolment of Phil Health insurance for indigent families, according to Garcia. Although the governor did not give the figure but she said she is not even satisfied with the number, as she wants all indigent families to be covered under Phil Health.

The governor recently disclosed this to the media to dispel fears that she has abandoned basic public services as she slammed critics against her administration on the cost of constructing the Cebu International Convention Center (CICC) describing the negative comments as "old hat or an old song."

"I have not abandon my duty to provide basic public services to the people of Cebu. I am not even entertaining any resolutions at this time," the governor quoted. Garcia further said she is even prioritizing such services such as roads, water and electricity. We already have put up a water system in the three towns of Bantayan where I also lost and will continue to dot his in other towns where water is a problem, said Garcia. The governor said constructing the P450-M CICC will benefit Cebu especially during the 12th Asean Summit as the facility will be promoted as a world-class convention center. The biggest international event of the country where Cebu has been chosen to be the venue by the President is a very rare opportunity as Garcia called on Cebuanos to support and pray for a successful hosting of the summit.

Meanwhile, Garcia said the peso's strengthening against the US Dollar signals that all economic indicators are positive. She called on all Cebuanos to be a beckon of hope for the country and maintain a positive outlook instead of being critical against government programs and projects. (PIA-Cebu/FCR) [top]

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