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PIA Press Release
2008/07/10

Sectors move to revive Davao River as water highway

by Prix D Banzon

Davao City (10 July) -- The global issue on oil, fuel and food banded various sectors of Davao City to revive the present state of the Davao River after the business sector proposed that it become Davao's water highway.

Davao City Councilor Leo Avila, III council committee chair on environment is amenable to the business sector proposal saying that they will request the business sector to come up with their presentation during the Davao River Forum on August 14, 2008 at the city's Sangguniang Panlungsod session hall.

The forum is part of the Davao River Festival in time for the Kadayawan Festival, Davao City's celebration of harvest and natural resources.

Avila, however said that efforts to protect and rehabilitate the Davao River must not only be during the Festival but must be sustaining even as he said that the present state of the river is not okay.

"The condition of the river is not very good but not hopeless and something could be done about this," he said.

Earlier report indicated that the Davao River has become the catch basin of varied pollutants making the state of the river not in good shape.

Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (DCCCII), executive director Conrado Hernaez, Jr. said the proposal of the business sector is to make the river as an alternative way to transport good from agricultural farms to the market.

The river has a good access to the Bankerohan Public Market where most of the farmers produce are brought to the bagsakan center.

He said that with the high cost of gasoline, using the river highway could cut cost of fuel as travel would be shorter to the market.

Farmers after bringing their produce to the center transport their produce through jeeps, he said.

With this proposal Avila requested the DCCCII to present their position paper during the Davao River Forum where all barangay captains of the city will also be joining.

Included in the objective of the river forum is to promote and create awareness on environmental policies, ordinances and laws related to Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM). It will also provide venue on issues about solid waste management, presentation of best practices on the management of waste and an avenue for networking and convergence of stakeholders and promote proper resource management.

Avila bared that Davao River 30 years ago, has been a good source for food where shrimps (uwang in the dialect) and fishes even near the Bankerohan Bridge can be fished.

Once develop it could also be a source of tourists attraction because part of the Davao River is a good area for kayaking and water tubing.

Both the government and private sector representatives said the project needs a lot of work but they will see to it something will happen with the people as their partner. (PIA) [top]

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