Public Works bureau told to speed up solutions to flooding-A A +A
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
CITY OF SAN FERNANDO – Representative Aurelio Gonzales (3rd District, Pampanga) has appealed to Public Works Secretary Ronald Singson to fast track flood control interventions for the province to avert a potential calamity and allay the fears of his cabalens.
Gonzales made the call as he expressed support for the agency's budget during the Department of Public Work and Highways (DPWH) budget committee hearing at the House of Representatives.
Gonzales enumerated the damaged flood control infrastructures, among them the tail dike in the City of San Fernando, the Cupang-Guemasan section of the Arnedo dike in Arayat, the Abacan river in Mexico and the Inumang Baka creek in Sta. Ana, all of which need immediate as well as long-term solutions.
Gonzales earlier made an aerial and actual province-wide inspection to assess the extent of the flood damage. He found out the collapsed tail dike, which left several barangays in the City of San Fernando flooded. He said the damaged portion of the dike is around 120 meters and is estimated to cost around P235 million.
Meanwhile, Singson said they have recently completed the masterplan for Metro Manila and surrounding areas and is currently updating the one for Central Luzon.
He assured the congressman that government resources are being mobilized to immediately address the problem.
Gonzales likewise proposed that in the drafting of the Flood Control Masterplan for Pampanga and Central Luzon, the DPWH should consider providing funds for the rechanneling of the Pasig Potrero River, as already contained in the Bacolor Rehabilitation Masterplan under the Bacolor Rehabilitation Act (RA 9506).
The rechanneling will help contain the high volume of water coming from the Zambales and Mt. Pinatubo areas and relieve pressure to the Gugu dike and mega dike.
He also urged the construction of a ring dike in Arayat to temporarily contain the flood waters coming from the Pampanga River and to serve as a reservoir for farmers' irrigation needs during the summer.
Gonzales also suggested the revival of the Pampanga River Control System, which allocates specific periodic maintenance funds for the river system in order to minimize the river's adverse effects during the rainy season.
He said he is willing to offer his technical expertise to the agency in the drafting and implementation of the flood-control masterplan.
Singson welcomed Gonzales’ offer of assistance and promised that the latter will be consulted in the planning as well as implementation of the flood mitigation projects for Pampanga and Central Luzon.
The DPWH earlier revealed that a P5-billion short-term flood control mitigation project is expected to be completed within the year, whereas P35 billion is being allocated for the long term Flood Management Masterplan to be implemented from now until 2035.
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on August 23, 2012.