124 sued over trash

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Friday, March 21, 2014


CEBU CITY -- At least 124 people are facing a case in court after the Cebu City Environmental Sanitation Enforcement Team (Ceset) found they failed to segregate their garbage.

Ceset head Grace Luardo said the cases filed against them are for violations of City Ordinance (CO) 2031, which requires waste segregation, and Republic Act (RA) 9003, otherwise known as the Solid Waste Management Act of 2000.

Luardo said the 124 people are part of the 376 individuals who were issued citation tickets by Ceset for failing to comply with the “no segregation, no collection” policy of the City Government. The policy has been strictly implemented again by the City starting March 1.

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The City initially enforced the policy in April 2011, following the closure of the Inayawan Sanitary Landfill in December 2010, but City Hall officials said it slowly died down because the participation of the barangays dwindled.

In an interview on Friday, Luardo said that only 124 individuals were charged since the 252 others opted to render community service, such as cleaning the different streets and areas of the city for four to six hours.

Those who face a case in court are some residents of Barangays Quiot and Capitol Site, among many others, she said. Ceset filed the cases in court last Wednesday.

Asked why households still fail to segregate their wastes properly, Luardo said that based on their visits, the residents put the blame on the City’s garbage trucks and drivers.

“Naa man guy moingon nga okay ra na, mo-kolekta gihapon sila ug unsegregated wastes, which is di mao (Some were told that even unsegretated wastes would still be collected),” she said.

Luardo said that some residents also mix their wastes because the garbage collection schedule is not followed.

The City and the barangay are supposed to collect biodegradable wastes every Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday while non-biodegradable wastes are to be collected every Tuesday and Saturday.

“Naay uban barangay nga maabtan ug isa or duha ka-semana nga di pa makolekta ang basura mao nga ma-mix na lang nila (Some barangays take one or two weeks to collect garbage, so the trash gets mixed up),” she said.

Luardo said she has already brought this up to the Department of Public Services (DPS) for their action.

Sought for comment, Assistant DPS chief Engr. Randy Navarro told Sun.Star Cebu on Friday that their department will meet with all the garbage truck drivers and loaders of the city to address the matter.

The meeting, he said, also seeks to address the complaint of the garbage truck drivers and loaders after some of them were issued citation tickets and named in court cases by Ceset for collecting unsegregated wastes.

“Ang ila man gud kuno nganu issuehan man silag citation or file-an ug kaso nga igo ra man sad sila nangolekta sa basura. So amo pa nang storyahan (They believe they shouldn’t be issued citation tickets for collecting waste. We’ll have to discuss that),” he said.

According to Luardo, there are already seven garbage truck drivers and loaders -- six from the DPS and one from the barangay -- who are facing a case in the court.

They form part of the more than 100 garbage truck drivers and loaders who were issued citation tickets by Ceset in the first week of March.

Only seven individuals were named respondents in cases in the court, Luardo said, as the others opted to render community service.

Luardo said they are strict in issuing citation tickets and are serious about filing cases against violators of CO 2031 and RA 9003, as a way of disciplining them.

Also, Luardo said their move serves as a warning that they are serious about implementing environmental laws. (Sun.Star Cebu)

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on March 22, 2014.

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