New Baguio mayor issues marching orders en route to better city

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BAGUIO CITY – Mayor Benjamin B. Magalong issued his marching orders to all departments of the city government to jumpstart the start of his three-year term aimed at elevating Baguio to greater heights.

The new city chief executive underscored he will sustain the transparency program of the past administration of former mayor Mauricio G. Domogan but it will be raised to the next level by providing the local legislative body periodic briefing of the city’s financial position.

He directed the government procurement committees to put on hold for 2 weeks the award of bidded-out infrastructure and services projects until the same are favorably reviewed for contractual obligation, and that all other items programmed for bidding will also be put on hold for immediate review.

The city mayor ordered the City Engineering Office (CEO) and the City Buildings and Architecture Office (CBAO) to strictly implement the safety standards and procedures in all project sites effective immediately wherein all workers should be required to wear their personal protective equipments, and contractors shall be held accountable for any violation.

For the local police force, he claimed there should be a continuity in the implementation of all pre-designed schemes to mitigate traffic congestions while awaiting the arrival of traffic engineers from the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) who will employ technology in addressing the city’s traffic problems.

“Traffic management is no easy feat. There is a science behind it,” Mayor Magalong stressed.

He asserted that for the City Environment and Parks Management Office (CEPMO) and the City General Services Office (CGSO), in coordination with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), to immediately undertake inspection of establishments and other structures to ensure compliance with environmental laws and ordinances and violators will be dealt with accordingly.

According to him, a zero tolerance to illegal gambling activities will be applied and all illegal gambling activities in the city shall cease to operate effective immediately.

He ordered the Baguio City Police Office (BCPO) to take the lead in the city’s anti-gambling campaign and for the public to be vigilant by reporting to the police attempts to operate illegal gambling in any part of the city.

Magalong emphasized fixers have no place in City Hall and an investigation is already underway against those who are reported to be involved, thus, it would serve as a fair warning.

In earlier interviews, Mayor Magalong stated the need for him to hit the ground running considering the high expectation of the people with the coming of his administration.

He noted despite his marching order for all contractors to ensure the availability of personnel protective equipment of workers, there are still construction workers in some projects in the city who have yet to comply, thus, he instructed the CBAO personnel to conduct the necessary inspection of project sites and immediately issue the required notice of violation to the erring contractors for them to be penalized and fined for said violations.

He stated it is important for the concerned government agencies and the local government to give dignity to the construction workers for their risky job. By Dexter A. See

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