ILOILO CITY–The help of barangay officials are certainly necessary for the city government to successfully rid the city streets of all road obstructions and other illegal structures.
This was the statement made by Task Force on Anti-Squatting and Illegal Structures Unit (TF-ASISU) head Love Joy Hosenilla recently to remind village officials that it is also their duty to clean their respective backyards of all roadblocks and not just wait for the city government to do it for them.
He cited as an example the unsightly habit of city residents to park their vehicles in places where it is prohibited to do so, including along major roads and streets, but which the barangays have failed to police.
“Barangay officials can already do that, but for some reason they don’t, or they simply ignore it,” Hosenilla said, adding that it is also true for illegal structures in their jurisdiction.
To remedy part of the problem, he said he already had initial discussions with the City Legal Office (CLO) regarding the possibility of refusing the renewal of business permits of those auto shops guilty of obstructing streets even after repeated warnings.
“Perhaps if an auto shop or two are closed to be made as an example, probably we can start to see some positive changes with the way people treat roadsides as if they’re their personal property,” the TF-ASISU chief quipped.
Meanwhile, Hosenilla also thumbed down the practice of several barangay officials of putting ropes and signs to discourage vehicle owners from parking their vehicles in the streets.
“It serves no purpose, really. Putting ropes with the ‘No Parking At All Times’ sign on the streets is the same as if a vehicle were illegally parked there. It’s still a road obstruction, only that it was the barangay that put it there,” Hosenilla reasoned.
“Abi sang iban nga barangay officials safe na sila sa validation pero in reality indi kay ang signs sa karsada mismo nabutang [These barangay officials thought they’re already safe in the validation but, in reality, they are not because the signs still obstruct the use of the road],” he added.
According to him, it was as if, instead of the residents getting the blame for the road obstruction or illegal structures, it was transferred to the barangay officials.
To note, today, February 16, is the first day of the validation process conducted by the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) relative to its nationwide road clearing campaign. The validation of the city’s 180 barangays will continue until March 2./(N. Glenn Aragon/INews)