On his first day of return to office as Narra’s chief executive on Friday, Mayor Gerandy Danao criticized the seawall project in Barangay Calategas that was constructed while he was serving his 14-month suspension.
In a press conference, Danao said that while he is not against the P115 million-worth seawall project, he said it is not serving its purpose as it is not helping fishermen of the barangay.
He added that the project was built only for “business” interests and that it reportedly ruined properties inside a mangrove area that was used as an access route for the seawall’s development.
“Hindi tayo against sa seawall. Pabor ako dyan kaso ang ang ginawa pinera nila. Dapat doon nilagay sa taas para ang bangka doon sisilong. Kung sila ay may isip dapat ginawa nila ng tama, walang malasakit ang gumawa nyan, kumita lang sila d’yan,” Danao said.
Local farmers have protested the construction of the project, claiming it lacked permits and was done without consultation. They also expressed concern the project would trigger flooding along the seaside community.
“Masisira ang natural na anyo ng aming dalampasigan, wala itong safety na magagawa sa amin. Isa siyang magiging hadlang sa amin [dahil] mababangga ang mga bangka namin sa seawall kapag nakadaong. Magkakaroon ng paghuhukay sa hibasan, apektado ang pagkuha namin ng shells na source ng aming hanapbuhay sa tuwing taghirap,” said Freddie Capispisan, a local pastor and fisherfolk leader said.
Meanwhile, Danao also said he will review all the ongoing and pending projects in the remaining months before the May 2022 national and local elections.
“Titingnan natin kung ano ang magiging priority lalo na pandemic ngayon, aralin natin,” he said.
His spokesperson Jojo Gastanes also said earlier in the week that he will review the overall operations of the local government including the COVID-19 response.
[Pagbalik nya], una ay magbababa sya ng memorandum sa mga offices para tingnan ang mga accomplishments, availability of funds, mga projects na natapos at on-going. Priority din ‘yong COVID-19 status, pag-inventory ng mga equipments,” Gastanes said.