WITH the summer vacation season in full swing, Senator Nancy Binay appealed to local government units to help in conducting an inventory of island destinations in their jurisdiction.
“Lumalabas po sa pagdinig ng Senate committee on tourism na wala pa po tayong detalyadong impormasyon tungkol sa mga isla sa ating bansa. Nakakalungkot po ito, lalo na pagdating sa development at implementation ng tourism master plan ng mga islang ito,” Binay said.
“Mahigit 7,000 po ang isla sa ating bansa, kung kaya’t nananawagan ako sa mga LGUs na tumulong sa national government sa pagconduct ng imbentaryo ng mga island destination at sa pag-alam ng carrying capacity nito,” she added.
Binay filed Senate Resolution 689, which directs the body to conduct an inquiry, in aid of legislation, about the need to create an inventory of island destinations to help in the implementation of tourism development master plans.
The Senate committee on tourism, which Binay chairs, will hold a public consultation in Dumaguete City on Friday, March 22, on the matter.
Binay said that Negros Oriental and Siquijor are up and coming destinations.
“Negros Oriental is being groomed as one of the tourism sports hub of the country, and Siquijor as the mystical island destination,” she said.
The committee had previously conducted a public hearing in the Senate, and a public consultation in Panglao, Bohol.
The resolution was filed in light of the closure of the island of Boracay for cleanup last year, but also resulted in lost revenues and jobs.
“Isinulong po natin ang panukalang resolusyong ito dahil sa nangyari sa Boracay. Bago po mangyari sa ibang isla ang nangyari sa Boracay, agapan na po natin. Alamin na natin kung ano ba ang carrying capacity ng isla at kung kaya ba nito ang dami ng tao na pupunta rito,” Binay said.
The legislator said it would be beneficial to know the carrying capacity of tourist destinations to guide the planning and implementation of tourism plans.
“Nakakalungkot, marami tayong destinations, pero hindi natin alam yung carrying capacity. We are spending to promote and develop it, but without knowing ano ba talaga yung kakayahan nung destination,” she added.
“Ngunit mayroong oportunidad ngayon na magsimula nang malinis, on a clean slate, sabi nga nila. Let us take the opportunity to take stock, and see what things can be done in order to make our destinations sustainable,” Binay added. (PR)