Lawyer appointed as transport chief

CEBU City Mayor Tomas Osmeña appointed a lawyer to lead the City Transportation Office (CCTO) 10 months since the traffic office began operations without a regular chief.

Lawyer Ismael Garaygay III assumed office last March 20, replacing acting traffic chief Atty. Rafael Christopher Yap, who was reassigned by the mayor as focal person of the Cebu Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project under the City Legal Office.

This would mean that Yap’s designation as officer-in-charge of the CCTO has technically and legally ended.

Osmeña made the pronouncement through a memorandum dated March 16, saying that Yap’s appointment is crucial to “address the success of the BRT.”

“Yap is going to be switched together with Engr. Nigel Paul Villarete for the BRT. The BRT is running into complications. Yap has been there from the beginning and Villarete is very good. He was the one who started the BRT,” he told reporters in an interview.

Last November, it was reported that the P10.6-billion project encountered another delay after the previous
administration reportedly failed to sign its consultancy contract.

With this, Osmeña lamented that the City might have to conduct another bidding, which will cause another delay.

The mayor said that Yap will be assigned to oversee the compliance of all legal requirements, including the signing of documents.

As for Garaygay, Osmeña said he will now make all the official directives regarding the traffic situation in the city.

The lawyer, who has been with the City Government for the past seven years, has concentrated on litigation solutions, estate planning and business registrations, among others.

As new chief, Garaygay said that his priorities will include stricter enforcement of traffic ordinances and efficient personnel management.
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