Iloilo Council conducts public hearing with Guimaras rep

THE Iloilo City Council conducted a public hearing on P11 terminal fee and the closure of the Ortiz wharf as well as the old Parola wharf on Friday, July 22.

Vice Governor John Edward Gando, who served as the acting leader on Guimaras counsel on the Iloilo-Guimaras ferry terminal project issue, represented the province.

He discussed in the hearing that they are not questioning the power of the Iloilo City Council in granting a franchise of 25 years to project developer Double Dragon Properties (DDP) as well as to ratify or not the joint venture agreement between the DDP and the city.

The Provincial Government of Guimaras is questioning the imposition of P11 terminal fee including the boat berthing fees as well as the closure of the Ortiz wharf for Jordan, Guimaras passengers and the old Parola wharf for Buenavista, Guimaras passengers.

“Just leave Ortiz and Parola wharves alone not to be involve with the new ferry terminal project and we (have) nothing to be in conflict with,” Gando said.

Last Tuesday, July 19, the City Council set aside the passage of a proposed ordinance that would grant Double Dragon Properties Corp and Iloilo-Guimaras Ferry Terminal Corp. a franchise to construct, develop, operate and maintain the ferry terminal complex.

In a first endorsement to the City Council on July 18, a unanimous decision was reached by the council members to also set aside the ratification of the Joint Venture Agreement between the City Government, Double Dragon and the terminal corporation, pending a committee hearing and public consultation on the project.

Councilor RLone Gerochi said the Ortiz wharf and old Parola wharf will not be closed as being not provided in the joint venture agreement.

The City Government of Iloilo and Double Dragon Property inked a joint venture agreement on October 2012 with the city providing one hectare of land for the construction of the P130-million ferry terminal.

Double Dragon started the construction of the project last year and set to be inaugurated soon. (Sunnex)
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