Sunday, August 18, 2019

Victorias City port by 2020?

NEGROS. “Give us a port.” This was the request of Victorias City Mayor Francis Frederick Palanca when he met President Rodrigo Duterte during the grand political rally in the city on March 8. In the photo are from left, Negros Occidental Vice Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson, Palanca, Rep. Alfredo Abelardo Benitez (3rd district, Negros Occidental), Duterte and senatorial candidate Bong Go. (Contributed photo)

VICTORIAS City Mayor Francis Frederick “Wantan” Palanca, who served as the host during the recent visit of President Rodrigo R. Duterte in the province, has asked the president’s assistance over his plan to build a port in the city.

“We are looking forward to building a port in our city,” said Palanca.

“This is what I asked from the President. I told him that we already increased our income by 400 percent. But we are a small city and we cannot afford a port,” he added.

“Malaysians and Chinese investors were talking to us about this. We are negotiating with them. But I told the President, ‘Mr. President, where can I ask for help?’ He asked, ‘Why?’ ‘Our city needs a port. We are the closest between Panay and Negros. We are the closest city in going to Boracay and consequentially to Batangas and Manila. We are also the closest in terms of coming from Luzon to Mindoro, Panay and going to Cebu. The travel time will be cut by a day when we have a port in our city. The port will change my city,’” he said.

Another interested group also offered to dredge the site of the proposed port.

They will help the city with licensing and everything else, but nothing has been finalized.

He added that the waves in the Visayan sea go to the direction of Negros.

“It’s very near to travel by sea going to Panay and to the famous Boracay,” said Palanca.

Duterte told him that he can help the city by 2020.

Mayor Palanca is the nephew of lawyer Simplicio Palanca, known as the father of the Bacolod port and reclamation.

During the President's visit, around 50,000 people gathered at the Victorias City coliseum and at the adjacent area to listen to the message of the President, who was joined by the Senatorial candidates of the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino – Lakas ng Bayan.


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