Progressive outlook-A A +A
Tuesday, August 7, 2012
WHATEVER its critics may say or think, the reality remains that the City of Lapu-Lapu is thriving and continues to thrive on its own resources and devices. The city may be lucky it has an international airport to keep it company in its quest for development, the focus of which is essentially tourism. Mactan airport should be recognized as the crux of the city’s economic growth.
I recall that the mayor of the city not very long ago complained that the airport management has been quite slow in responding to the city’s management needs, such as for updated payment of taxes in order for the City to also be able to keep up with its infrastructure projects. It was noted then that there was a shortage of classrooms in Lapu-Lapu City.
The Mactan Cebu International Airport is planning to update the airport’s physical make-up in response to Lapu-Lapu’s development as tourism hub in Cebu and Central Visayas. Witness the tourism activities in Olango island, which is fast growing as a tourist haven.
It was not very long ago when Lapu-Lapu was considered by the people in the region as just one of those places with questionable pretensions to development. But its location in Cebu’s physical setup is quite difficult to ignore.
With its proximity to Cebu City, and along with the rise of Mandaue and Talisay into cities themselves, it became quite inevitable that, with proper management, the strategic location of the city, enhanced all too inevitably by the airport, would ensure that Lapu-Lapu would excel in its role.
The leadership of Mayor Paz Radaza has not been immediately recognized by her constituents as suited to run the city as a tourism hub. In fact, the initial impression of her management capability appeared to me as just a so-so case.
I first met her when a friend invited me to have dinner with her some three years ago at the Plantation Bay hotel. I have not met her again since then, but I read with growing interest her various activities, especially her hosting of impressive sports events.
The worldwide attention that the international sports events held in her city have made her city a tourism star to the region. But we should note that in her recent State of the City (Soca), delivered at the Hoops Dome, she talked not only of her tourism accomplishments but also many other things including environment protection and eradication of illegal fishing, which is the bane of many of our other local governments in the region. That makes Mayor Radaza an eclectic mayor.
Perhaps, it is possible for us to hope that we would have other forward looking leaders in our midst.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on August 08, 2012.