Tribal leaders to press Oro council to hasten FMRs

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Monday, July 14, 2014


TRIBE leaders of hinterland villages in Cagayan de Oro City would attend the City Council session Monday to press the officials to hasten the approval of the city’s equity on the farm-to-market road projects (FMRs) of the Department of Agriculture (DA).

The leaders of the recipient villages sent a letter to the City Council through Vice Mayor Ceasar Ian Acenas, asking him to speed up the approval of the ordinance so these DA projects can start.

Fausto Orasan, the spokesman of a group of the city’s indigenous people, said the FMRs that would straddle from Barangays Lumbia to Tumpagon and from Besigan to Dansolihon are vital to the progress of these remote villages.

Orasan said they would ask and persuade Acenas and the council to hasten the approval of the equity.

“Nothing has been done yet. The roads here are still rough and unrepaired affecting the transport of our produce,” Orasan said.

The fruit and vegetable sellers in these barangays have been complaining how the roads damaged their produce like bananas, which can easily perish due to the pitiable condition of the roads there.

City Hall records show that DA has allocated P120 million for the FMR projects that would be constructed in various rural and suburban villages in the region.

Once the funds are released, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) will carry out the projects’ implementation.

In order for the DA to release the budget, the City Government is required to chip in 10 percent of the said budget, at P12 million, as equity fund. But the P12 million could only be disbursed once the City Council passes an ordinance allowing for its release.

“For a long time, we have been suffering because of our potholed road. There are times we could not even hire a truck to bring our produce to the markets due to this condition. The drivers are afraid they might get a flat tire or their vehicle will break down,” Orasan said.

"This project should have been implemented a long time ago. We hope Sir Acenas will not forget us. He is a good person. But we don’t know why until now it (ordinance) has not been signed. They said there are so many lacking requirements. That is not true," he added.

“We don’t want any trouble. We only want for the City Government to give us that project,” he said.

Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro repeatedly called and messaged Acenas’s mobile number for his comment, but none of them were returned as of press time.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on July 14, 2014.

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