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PIA Press Release

Gov't to dismantle "dangerous" billboards

By Rose Palacio

Davao City (15 August) -- Despite appeals and objections from billboard owners and advertisers, the government is determined to remove billboards that pose clear hazards to life and property as President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has ordered the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) to dismantle hazardous billboards.

Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Undersecretary Bashir Rasuman, during his recent project inspection in region eleven said billboard owners and advertisers have also their respective responsibilities in safeguarding the lives of the people, including properties, and ensure the structures they placed are safe.

"The DPWH, billboard owners and advertisers are mapping out safety measures to protect the public; and the government ensures that rules and regulations will be complied with," USEC Rasuman told the Philippine Information Agency in an exclusive interview.

The President has also instructed the concerned government agencies and the National Disaster Coordinating Council to coordinate with local government units in identifying safe places for setting up billboards.

USEC Rasuman, together with DPWH XI Director Dimas Soguilon (now Assistant Secretary of DPWH as appointed by the President), has been inspecting bridges and other infrastructure projects in Mindanao following an instruction from the President and DPWH Secretaray Hermogenes Ebdane Jr. to be always prepared in times of disaster or any calamities.

Secretary Ebdane has instructed all regional and district engineering offices in Mindanao region to conduct thorough assessment and inspection of pier, column and girder of bridges and if necessary mobilized emergency repair team to ensure the safety of the public.

At present, DPWH OIC-regional director Hadji Pundidato Mitmug, said the department has been closely coordinating with the local government units, particularly in the city of Davao in the implementation of major projects in the city.

Just yesterday (Monday), DPWH OIC-RD Mitmug, together with planning chief, Engr. Diding Tan had a close door conference with Atty. Cesar Dataya of the Shelter and planning division for the forthcoming construction of the Matina-Ulas overpass which needs clearing of the road right-of-way, power posts of the Davao Light and Power Company, clearing of utilities constructed by the DCWD, SMART and GLOBE and other utilities that needs to be removed before the actual construction. (PIA XI) [top]

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