Department of Transportation (DOTr) Project Management Service Director Engr. Eduardo Mangalili presented the airport and sea port projects in Region VIII during the 2nd Quarter 2018 RDC VIII Infrastructure and Utilities Development Committee (IUDC) Meeting on 31 May 2018 at Sal’s Bar and Restaurant, Tacloban City. He was accompanied by DOTr OIC-Area Manager for Region VIII Wilfredo B. Cruz, DOTr Project Engineer Santy Zapata, and Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) Acting Chief Raul Glorioso.

After the discussion, the Committee passed a resolution recommending to the RDC VIII the creation of a Technical Working Group (TWG) that will oversee the budget allocation, timeframe, and comprehensive planning for all the ongoing airport projects in Region VIII. This is to prevent delays due to relocation of affected families and to ensure fund utilization. RDC VIII-IUDC Co-Chairperson and Private Sector Representative for Business Group Sector, PSR Oliver Cam, was requested to be the interim Chairperson, with a permanent Chairperson to be selected during the first meeting of the TWG. Members of the TWG are CAAP, DOTr, LGUs with airports in Region VIII, DPWH VIII, DOT VIII, DENR VIII, NHA VIII, and NEDA VIII.

The Committee also passed a resolution recommending to RDC VIII to request all local government units with existing seaports to submit utilization reports to the RDC VIII. Information from these requests is necessary for future interventions.

Other resolutions passed during the meeting include: (1) requesting engineering intervention on the perennial flooding, landslides, roadslips along the Matag-ob to Palompon Highway and Capoocan Highway Section; (2) requesting DPWH to fast-track the completion of the asphalt overlay project and repainting of the San Juanico Bridge in preparation for the San Juanico Bridge Aesthetic Lighting Project; and (3) recommending RDC VIII approved the creation of a TWG on the tourism development of the periphery of San Juanico Bridge.

Also during the meeting, retired NIA VIII Regional Manager Romeo G. Quiza, a former IUDC member, was given a plaque of recognition for his efforts in accelerating irrigation development in Eastern Visayas. It was during his time that implementation of various Communal National Systems and foreign-assisted irrigation projects were vigorously pursued despite the reduction in the number of technical personnel after the NIA Rationalization Plan.

The meeting was presided over by RDC VIII-IUDC Co-Chairperson PSR Oliver Cam, assisted by RDC VIII Secretary and NEDA VIII Assistant Regional Director Meylene C. Rosales. It was attended by 48 representatives from regional line agencies, LGUs, and the private sector.

Sarina Joy Odivilas, PMED, NEDA VIII