NOW we will start with a non-political issue for our piece today.

     Remember that for several columns in the past we harped on the failure of the local government of Davao City to complete the process of its procurement, distribution, and utilization of garbage bins in various barangays including those in the rural areas?

     Yes, we are already getting more upset seeing the many garbage bins still stocked in places either outside barangay halls or in a corner of a covered court if the recipient village has one. These garbage bins were distributed to the barangays for more than two years already. Yes, the distribution was done before the onset of the CoViD 19 pandemic. Yet, until now the bins are still piled up and are slowly deteriorating.  Some have already detached covers. Others are getting deformed because some heavier objects are made to lean on them.

     We have no doubt that the bins cost the city government millions of pesos considering their number and the size of the receptacles. So we could not help but ask: Why has the city government or the City Environment and Natural Resources Office (City ENRO) for that matter, apparently taken the situation for granted?

     As an example, in the Tugbok District of Davao City where we have a rural residence and have more time visiting or passing by the barangays along our way or whenever we move around so we could keep ourselves “grounded,” certain villages are recipients of as many as 10 to 25 garbage bins. Of course, the purpose of the receptacles is for temporary depositories of household waste before this will be collected by the contracted haulers of the city government.

     Unfortunately, instead of waste depositories, the bins are slowly becoming a waste after the long period of stocking and allowing them at the mercy of natural elements. For certain, the CENRO people will contradict our assertion of the bins deteriorating into “waste.” These are made of some kind of heavy plastic or perhaps some synthetics that could withstand the passage of time.

    We may agree with them on that argument. But just the same, it is a huge waste of government resources in procuring the bins at a definitely “advantageous” cost to the city government (or advantageous to some of its people’s pocket?).

    What gets the goat in us though is that these bins have, for the longest time, not been distributed to designated locations in the recipient barangays if the purpose of the large receptacle distribution is to have a specific depository of their household refuse for the waste haulers to effectively collect? 

     Are we to assume that the reason why this garbage bins acquisition and distribution project has not been fully implemented is that the city failed to upgrade its contract with hauling companies? Or, is the city waiting for another opportunity to purchase a huge number of its own garbage trucks?

     Whichever, it is clear the project of improving the rural barangays’ sanitation through an effective garbage disposal system is a dismal failure.

     It is just unfortunate that the City Mayor or whoever is on top of the local government appears to be clueless as to the actual status of the project. Maybe CENRO people are good at smoke-screening the city’s garbage disposal situation so that not a whiff of its toxic smell is able to escape to give the city administration a fair warning.

     We are also saddened at the thought that not a single aspirant to the mayoralty post from among those who are against the local administration ever got wind of the garbage collection mess that we are harping on here. It would have been a burning issue that they could confront the current administration

     Of course, we know that none of them have gone deeply and covered largely the real situation on the ground. The candidates are merely dependent on what they hear and what ground scenarios are given to them by their supposed leaders and advisers. Or, perhaps they simply do not care.


     This week is the last week for campaigning by the candidates for national and local elective positions. In the remaining four days (official) the aspirants will be unleashing or throwing whatever remains of the aces they are hiding on their sleeves.  

     This week will even be the time to use diabolical options if aspirants are really hell-bent on attaining victory no matter what it takes. And some of those diabolic strategies are these: the deliberate exclusion of certain party-mates in the official line-up in sample ballots; (in Filipino “Laglagan” of what party gods consider as “undesirable” or dispensable from the team) and the wholesale vote-buying coupled with subtle intimidations (We will explain how the latter scheme is done in our next column).

     In certain districts of Davao City, we were informed that barangay captains and councilors are called by top political personalities any day this week and will reportedly be given corresponding finances to ensure that this and that candidate will be dropped from the official line-up. Another condition demanded in exchange for the money, we were told, is for the barangay officials to urge voters to vote for a solo or two or three candidates only. Supposedly this will ensure that their favored candidates for councilors will land on the top of the heap.

     Then the extreme condition is for barangay officials to look for people who could be used to intimidate families of barangay leaders not to go to the polls and vote if they cannot be persuaded to accept money to sway their family members’ votes to their desired aspirants. The last one is the most devious strategy a little bit short of election terrorism.

     For comments and/or reactions we can be reached through the e-mail address; Mobile No. 09392980435; and Landline at 2372169.




Source: Mindanao Times (