Lapu-Lapu City businessman Efrain Pelaez, Jr. “exposed” wide-scale illegal burning of garbage in one of the barangays in the city.
A video purportedly taken on June 3 this year was released to media by Pelaez's press relations officer Cerwin Eviota.
“In behalf of Mr. Efrain Pelaez, Jr. and active citizens of Lapu-Lapu City, we issue this *URGENT ALERT* of a wide-scale burning of garbage throughout the island city that Mr. Pelaez first noted from the plane in a trip from Manila over the weekend.
“We noted no less than 10 pocket fires city-wide that we have verified as burning of garbage,” the press statement accompanying the video said.
Mayor Paz Radaza however laughed off the video and branded it as politically motivated. Pelaez ran against Radaza in 2010.
Pelaez alleged that the burning of garbage was part of City Hall's “concerted effort to rid the city of uncollected garbage before the expiry of the 30-day period they gave” before bringing the matter to court.
The video, according to Radaza, was recycled from 2010. She said in a press conference that the video was taken in barangay Ibo near gate 4 of the Mactan Export Processing Zone Authority.
“Mao ra man na gihapon, way bag-o nakuha iyang cam? (His camera did not get any new footage),” Radaza told reporters.
Speaking for Pelaez, Eviota said their lawyers are studying their legal options as burning of garbage is prohibited by the Solid Waste Management Act of 2000 and the Philippine Clean Air Act of 1999.
“They could not wash their hands with all these happening right under their noses -- even now as we write this email statement, a glaring indifference akin to their obvious neglect of the city's garbage situation” it added.
Radaza seconded that burning of garbage is a violation. But she denied the allegation that the video is taken this year and reiterated that the Pelaez’s intention is “purely politicking”.
Meanwhile Engr. Ricardo Mendoza, head of Mandaue City’s Solid Waste Management Board said they conducted a house to house campaign encouraging every household to have their own way of composting biodegradable garbage.
This program is to help lessen the volume of garbage to be thrown at Consolacion dump site and those thrown in the drainage, which they first cited in their survey as one of the reasons for the cause of floods in the several areas of the City.
Mendoza said that since last month, they have already visited some of the barangays and implemented the household composting such as barangays Ibabao, Casili, Tabok, and Paknaan.
Mendoza added that in their survey they also saw a disparity of the population and the number of garbage trucks in a barangay.
“Example lang ang sa barangay Subangdaku nga anaay 25,000 population and only have three garbage trucks to collect the garbage every day,” Mendoza said. /Fe Marie D. Dumaboc, Correspondent with reports from Correspondent Norman V. Mendoza