MANILA, Philippines – With only two months before the anticipated reopening of Boracay, residents questioned the government’s confidence that road repairs will be finished on time.
Photos taken between August 10 to 20 showed various roads still in need of work, with no construction activities happening.
“Sinasabi nila [government] sisikapin nila pero parang ang hirap isipin na within 60 days,” said Nenette Graf, Boracay Foundation President on Monday, August 20, on the sidelines of the senate hearing on the rehabilitation efforts.
(The government said they will do their best, but it’s hard to imagine that it will all be done within 60 days.)
The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) told the Senate committee on environment and natural resources that they are on track with completing the circumferential road that would link barangay Yapak to Puka Beach and other areas.
The agency also reported that construction work in the main road is 40% completed.
While Graf agreed that the circumferential road is “definitely looking good,” she said this is only a part of the bigger task for the DPWH.
“Seeing the the main road which is the main access to island establishments is quite frustrating because despite its complete closure, we do not see any ongoing work being done,” the foundation’s statement read.
“The island definitely looks like a war zone with muddy and empty roads. We hardly see contractors on the main road,” the foundation added.
Residents also expected that road works would be done 24/7, but Graf claimed they seldom see construction activities from government agencies.
“It’s only water utility companies who are continuously laying out pipes. Open drains and manholes are also attracting mosquitoes, which have also led to an increase in the number of recorded dengue cases on the island,” the group said.
Despite the slow pace, Boracay Foundation insisted that the closure should not be extended. (OPINION: Small people bear brunt of Boracay closure)
“These issues could have been avoided if proper planning was made and if a systematized communication plan was in place at the onset of the rehabilitation,” the foundation said. – Rappler.com