Believe it or not-A A +A
Wednesday, August 21, 2013
'EIGHT hundred barangay police to help secure city during Kadayawan festival.'
The rest of the year they're stored - deflated and powdered like empty diver's suits so as they won't stick together - in a warehouse down Agdao way, brought out only at fiesta and election time. No? When was the last time you saw a barangay policeman down your way, let alone - according to Councilor Edgar Ibuyan - kitted out 'wearing their respective uniforms'.
In a similar Ripley's vein Mayor Rody Duterte has once again reminded street vendors to observe the city sidewalk one third/two-thirds rule where the merchant and his paraphernalia occupy a third of the width of the sidewalk leaving two-thirds unobstructed and for the use of pedestrians. I wish you luck with that Mayor - sidewalk and street vendors have ignored this rule since its introduction several mayoralties past - I fail to see why the latest notice should be any different unless, of course, the city actually implements its own rules by confiscating the carts and tables and goods of erring vendors and tossing the whole lot into the river. Only then, maybe, will sidewalk vendors get the message.
Meanwhile, over on Samal, swanky beach resort owners are up in arms over the Department of Environment and Natural Resources - DENR's - proposal to implement an open access policy requiring resorts to allow public access to the island's beaches. I've long campaigned on this irony - that Samal promotes itself on its beaches and then effectively closes many of them to the public by allowing seaside resorts and developments to appropriate the beaches for themselves and their moneyed customers (Roads too - the barangay road from Babak to Tambo has been blocked by landowners whose properties straddle the road).
The resorts say that allowing public access to their beaches would compromise their security which is horse manure - their concern is that it would take away their exclusivity, their 'shimmering white sands' - sands which are not theirs at all but belonging to the public, to everybody. The nation's laws state that the foreshore exposed between low and high tide belongs to the nation, not to any private individual or concern. It can be rented but - according to law – must still be accessible to the general population for 'recreation, salvage and fishing'.
Boracay sells itself on its beaches too but the last time I was there (Admittedly a time ago and somewhat briefly) the beaches were wide and free for anybody to walk along for miles and miles, resorts being tucked away in the palms behind a sort of circumferential and sandy track.
Lastly, Moro National Liberation Front chairman Nur Misuari has apparently declared a Bangsamoro Republic which will embrace the whole of Mindanao, Palawan and Malaysian Sabah with Davao as its capital. That'll bring in the investors.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on August 22, 2013.