Hidalgo: Developmental plans for Mindanao

MAYOR Sara Duterte-Carpio, after a thorough study, did not approve the Davao Coastal Development Project. It is a first class highly competitive reclamation project. It is a P39 billion project which will reclaim seashores from Agdao up to Bucana. It will vastly disturb and damage the rich marine flora like corals and fauna asfish life and mollusks. It will destroy the land formation at the oceans bottom natural structural levels. It is a gigantic assault on the integrity of the ocean bottom landform. In the end, there will be more losses than gains.

Why not proceed with the planned modernization of Sasa Wharf costing 19 billion pesos approved by the Association of Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry? It is a national government project and not just a local plan. I wrote about this before. The problem was about widening the road by relocating residences affected. They can be paid for their property to relocate somewhere. There were dissenting notes from local business concerns of the Floirendos and Razons. I am for reconsidering this latter option. Less assault of nature is found here.

The second item I studied is the approval of President Duterte to grant free tuition to selected colleges and universities for this school year which has the fund ready. He could not answer for the ensuing years. He plans to review the findings of the COCCs. Government provided for their funding. He found out some are at a losing end and should be stopped.

Another rule is this. Students must take qualifying test and good records to show. The ones with low grades, lazy, and truants should not be given free tuitions.

Concerning field trips, Department of Education (DepEd) had issued a memo about a further critical study of Field Trip Ban for all schools. The tragic accident of a field trip to Tanay of a local school where many died and more were wounded triggered this ban. The Tour Bus had no permit to travel. I have not heard any decision on this accident.

DepEd has drawn a memo on the strict supervision of field trips. Requirements of permits, submission of goals for the trip, etc. Personally, I recommend field trips to supplement learning inside a classroom. Forty-five years of teaching showed me the vital part of field trips to successful learning. I hope the ban is lifted and the safety rules must be strictly followed.

Last but not the least is this National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security. The framework is the planned goal in promoting women's rights, needs, and roles in peace building, peace keeping, and peace negotiations. They have 64trainees from different government agencies. The new plan had integrated the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination against Women.

This highlights the participation and leadership of women in the peace process as well as its strengthened mechanisms in protecting women during and after the conflict. The agencies also include the National Commission on Indigenous People and the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos.

It is heartening to write about these issues amidst our much troubled country and the whole world. Let us all take part in the pursuit for peace and progress.

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