Biodegradable debris such as dried leaves, twigs, and branches that the typhoon left behind in city roads, which are fire threats and traffic obstructions.

Mayor Lucilo Bayron and the city government will lead a cleanup effort tomorrow, Saturday, to remove brown waste left by Typhoon Odette in urban barangays.

Brown waste in the cleanup effort, according to Puerto Princesa government information chief Richard Ligad, refers to the removal of biodegradable debris such as dried leaves, twigs, and branches that the typhoon left behind in city roads, which are fire threats and traffic obstructions.

The event will begin with Zumba and registration activities at 5:30 a.m., before moving out to four primary assignment sites at 6 a.m.

“Magkakaroon tayo ng cleanup drive, ito kasi ay sa kadahilanang marami tayong mga dating green waste ang tawag namin pero ngayon ay brown waste na dahil sa natuyo na. Hindi naman kasi talaga mahahakot agad ng mga basurero natin yan kung tayo lang na mga taga solid waste dahil may mga basura pa rin tayong kailangang asikasuhin,” he said.

“Sobra talaga ang dami — unang-una, first time talaga na ganito kalakas ang bagyo sa Puerto, so sobrang dami na nandidyan ngayon,” Ligad added.

Ligad said Mayor Bayron saw fit for the city government to spearhead the cleanup effort with the cooperation of City Hall employees and workers, as well as officials from the barangays and volunteers.

Engr. Jovenee Sagun, chief of the City Planning and Development Office (CPDO), will be the incident commander of the activity and its operation center will be at the People’s Amphitheater in Mendoza Park.

Equipment and other materials that will be used in the cleanup activity will be distributed to city cleaners or groundsmen at the amphitheater.

“Kundi man maubos ay mabawasan ng malaki itong mga brown waste dahil nagiging risky na rin ito sa mga kababayan natin. Isang upos lang ng sigarilyo, maaaring makapag-cause ng malaking sunog. Yong iba naman mga nakasandal na puno na lang pala sa isang establisyemento at any moment puwede nang bumagsak kung magkakaroon ng malakas na hangin,” he explained.

Ligad said the city government is urging residents to help with the urban cleanup because their number is insufficient to cover all areas.

The assignment sites are:

  • Team 1 – Poblacion, Milagrosa, Bancao-Bancao, Bagong Sikat, Portion of San Miguel
  • Team 2 – San Pedro, San Miguel, Mandaragat
  • Team 3 – Tiniguiban, Sta. Monica, Sicsican, Irawan, Portion of San Jose, Tagburos, Sta. Lourdes
  • Team 4 – San Manuel, San Jose, Tagburos, Sta. Lourdes

“Mangangailangan tayo ng tulong mula sa mga mamamayan natin, mula sa mga kababayan natin. Ang itinalaga bilang incident commander ng ating alkalde ay si ma’am Jovenee Sagun, yong ating CPDO officer, siya yong makaka picture out kung ano yong mangyayari, makakapag-supervise, kasi ang gusto ni mayor kapag sinimulan natin, hindi tayo titigil hangga’t hindi tapos,” he said.

The teams may go back on Sunday, January 9, if the cleanup drive will not be able to complete the removal of all waste materials from Odette’s onslaught.

He said the teams will need to speed up the cleanup drive since there remains more debris in the northern barangays of the city.

“Kailangan nating mag-apura dahil kailangan din nating asikasuhin yong mga ibang barangay sa norte na nalinis nga ang kalsada pero hindi makatayo ng bahay dahil may mga kahoy din na nakahambalang doon sa kanilang mga lupa na malalaki na kailangan din nating tulungan na linisin,” he said.

“Uunahin lang muna yong dito sa bayan. Yong ibang ahensya ng city government ay hinati-hati na rin sa apat na teams,” Ligad added.

He said the Puerto Princesa City Water District (PPCWD), the Puerto Princesa City Police Office, and other agencies have volunteered to join the cleanup drive.

Barangays officials, he added, had a meeting with Bayron on Thursday for the purpose and to also help seek volunteers.

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has been with Palawan News since January 2019. She is its managing editor, overseeing and coordinating day-to-day editorial activities. Her writing interests are politics and governance, health, defense, investigative journalism, civic journalism, and the environment.