A PUBLIC hearing on the proposed funeral parlor and embalming facilities at Lower Zone 2 in Barangay Bulua is set on Saturday at 9:00 a.m. amid opposition from the residents.

Al Legaspi, Bulua barangay chair, said the public hearing will be conducted to give the residents the chance to air their opposition on the proposed project.

Residents in the area earlier said they would boycott the public hearing if it would be held at the site.

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Gemma Pabayo-Velasco, a native of the barangay who leads a group of protesting residents, said they want a neutral ground for the public hearing and preferred the barangay’s covered court as the venue.

However, Legaspi said the covered court has already been reserved for the regional finals of the judo karate competition.

With this, Velasco said they would still attend the public hearing but promised to bring placards to publicly air their opposition to the project.

Earlier, residents in the area are opposing the project of St. Peter Chapel due to environment and health reasons.

They said the project, if pushed through, might contaminate their source of drinking water, which is located near the proposed site.

Tuburan, a spring at Lower Zone 2 where some residents sourced their drinking water, reportedly has “endless clear flowing water that came out miraculously.”

Legaspi said he doesn’t personally agree with the project as this might affect Tuburan, which the barangay is planning to develop as a tourist site.

“But we will see during the public hearing if what would be the decision of the residents. If they are amenable to the project or not,” he said.

Velasco said they are not saying “no” to the planned project of St. Peter Chapel but this should be located somewhere else, not in their area.

“Residents in the area who have no access to the water district get their drinking water at Tuburan, which we consider as a part of Bulua’s history,” she said.

In April 2009, the management of St. Peter conducted a public hearing on the proposed project attended by only a few residents in the area, which Velasco called as a “failed public hearing” considering the number of attendees.

However, she said they were surprised when the Barangay Council approved the project in July 2009.

But Legaspi said they recalled the approval after the residents filed a petition.

The lot where the proposed project would be constructed, according to Velasco, is owned by Mayor Constantino Jaraula. But Legaspi said he already told Jaraula that the Barangay Council would follow whatever the residents would decide during the hearing.

“Kung unsay gusto sa kinabag-ang residente sa maong dapit, mao gyud ang tumanon sa barangay,” he said.