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PIA Press Release
Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Gapo gov’t clears city’s waterways, starts demolition of illegal structures

by Allen M. Villa

OLONGAPO CITY, Jan. 18 (PIA) -- Amidst the typhoons that hit the cities, the city government has begun clearing drainage systems and waterways and intensified its efforts in informing residents of the hazards posed by structures on these canals.

The city government said that the demolitions, carried out by the City Engineering Office (CEO), received no opposition as residents are either voluntarily dismantling their structures or allow the demolition team to carry out the task.

Illegal structures from four households built on top of the drainage canal along Basa St., New Banicain were among the first to be demolished in an operation last Jan. 6, the report stated.

The demolition was carried out in response to the petition of New Banicain Brgy. Captain Zar Batapa to knock down parts of a pantry, balcony, bathroom, fence and a roof extension illegally constructed on top of the drainage canal that hinder the de-clogging of waterways at the vicinity.

CEO’s Engineer Noel Debatian said that prior to the demolition, notices dated September 2009 were given to the concerned households to provide necessary documentation and permits to prove their claims on the areas where they erected the illegal structures.

“Since the residents received and signed the notices, not one of them responded nor manifested opposition to the planned demolition. Given the chance to contest since Sept. 2009 until now, I think we have given them enough time to act suitably on this matter. I guess they understand that they constructed on a public property and did not oppose for the common good,” City Engineer Roberto Alvarez said.

Engineer Alvarez also explained that construction of illegal structures is a violation of section 301 of PD1096 also known as the National Building Code of the Philippines.

“Okay lang po. Dalawa naman ang CR namin. Matagal na rin po kaming binigyan ng notice tungkol dito. (It is okay. We have two comfort rooms anyway. We've been served notice about this long before.)” said Lydia Dominado, a member of the Del Rosario family, when asked about how she felt about the demolition. (WLB/AMV/PIA Zambales)

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