Nalzaro: No more ‘pera sa basura’


WITH the arrival of 21 brand-new garbage compactor trucks, we can expect an efficient and effective garbage collection by Cebu City Hall in the coming days. If City Hall still fails to collect garbage, then the problem is no longer with the lack or shortage of equipment, especially garbage trucks, but perhaps the lack of monitoring and supervision by the people who are in charge of waste disposal.

Mayor Edgardo Labella announced that City Hall will no longer outsource garbage collection with the arrival of the new garbage compactor trucks. The City will have a total of 32 running-condition garbage trucks, enough to serve the residents’ demand in terms of garbage collection.

The City Government will just have to finish and terminate the contract it signed with Jomara Konstruct until December this year. After that, the City will take control of garbage collection which will save the City about P50 million a year. The City is paying Jomara in the amount of P25 million from July to December for garbage disposal.

In the previous administration, the garbage disposal budget ballooned to several millions of pesos. There were a lot of City officials as well as private entities who allegedly made a lot money because of the waste disposal contract. The waste management business is very vulnerable to corruption. Literally, “may pera sa basura.” There is money in garbage.

Waste systems are operated by a myriad or countless different companies and organizations. But who does what, why and when and for how much is the question on the lips of many involved in the business, whether public authorities or private companies.

Before he officially assumed as ex-officio member in the City Council representing the Association of Barangay Councils (ABC), Franklin Ong, owner of Pasajero Motors Corporation (Pamocor), often won in the bidding for garbage disposal. Companies believed linked to Ong allegedly cornered contracts such as those for medicine and office supplies at City Hall during the administration of “has-been” mayor Tomas Osmeña. Ong is said to be the number one campaign fund contributor to Osmeña’s Bando Osmeña Pundok Kauswagan (BOPK) political aggrupation.

Here’s how these “unscrupulous” people allegedly made money. On trucks rental. The contract for garbage trucks rentals was supposed to be for 24 hours of usage, seven days a week. But these trucks were only utilized for several hours, not for the 24-hour contracted period. Then, on the garbage collection, it is counted per ton per delivery. They overpriced it and sometimes “tampered” with the delivery receipts, in cahoots with inspectors, from the transfer station to the dumping site. We don’t even know how much it cost to deliver one truckload of garbage from the transfer station in Inayawan to the landfill in Consolacion.

We don’t even know if, during the dumping of the garbage at the sanitary landfill, the inspectors there were honest in their monitoring because the counting is per ton. There is too much money to be made in waste management.

But now, under Labella’s watch, garbage collection will no longer be outsourced. This would mean less money for corrupt officials.

Waste disposal is really a global problem. Imagine some countries are even dumping their garbage here in the country. It became a big issue when garbage from South Korea and Canada were dumped here. Waste is a huge and growing problem. Waste management is a cross-cutting issue impacting on many aspects of society and economy. It has strong linkages to a range of other global challenges such as health, climate change, poverty reduction, food and resource security and sustainable production and consumption.

Unya duna lay mga opisyal nga maayo kaayong mosakay sa panahon kay naay kuwarta sa basura.


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