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PIA Press Release

Feature: Santo Tomas waste management a paradigm for other LGUs

Davao City (21 October) -- Last October 4-6, 2006, mayors and other key LGU officials particularly the Municipal Planning and Development Coordinator (MPDC) or the Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Officer (MENRO) of the different municipalities nationwide gathered at Quezon City to listen to the experiences of successful implementors on how to run an Integrated Solid Waste Management program in the most efficient, effective, and responsive way.

And among those who shared their success stories is the municipality of Santo Tomas.

The said brainstorming was attended by no less than Ms. Li-Ann D. Leon, executive Director-LMP, Prof. Edel Guiza, of Asian Institute management, Atty. Wilman Pollisco and Dr. Victor luis, Jr. both from Philippine Environmental Governance (EcoGov) and Mr. Rommel Martinez of Evelio B. Javier Foundation, Inc.

With such audience, Sto. Tomas was given highlight due to its simple strategy the "political will" of which Mayor Maximo Estela, MD have plenty of, it has been said that his strategy is a political suicide, however he firmly believes that the negative perception towards the program will soon die down and so it did.

The audience was in awed as Mayor Estela recounted the obstacles his administration has surpassed and implemented the ESWM in all 19 barangays of the municipality and in 4 months time has put the program in place. Currently, Sto Tomas is elated with its 90% successful implementation.

Mayor Estela is optimistic in perfecting the implementation of the program, aspiring for sustainability as he said " We hope that the better side of the dreaded GARBAGE will remain in the habitual system of our people!"

Furthermore, Mayor Estela also commended his barangay captains who were behind him all the way in the implementation of the program. It should be noted that the core of the success of the ESWM is in the full support at the level of the grass roots of the municipality.

Currently, the best practices of Santo Tomas' ESWM and its Municipal Ecological Park and Ecology Center (MEPEC) is a preferred venue for Lakbay-Aral by NGO's and LGU's coming as far as Bohol. A total of 102 NGO's/National/Regional/Provincial Offices and LGU's barangays, cities and municipalities has visited and seen Santo Tomas MEPEC in the hope of replicating the success of the implementation or to learn from its renowned procedures. (MIO-Santo Tomas,DDN/PIA XI) [top]

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