LINGAYEN, Pangasinan – The Cease and Desist Order (CDO) earlier issued by the Provincial Legal Office (PLO), pending the issuance of permit by the Provincial Engineering Office (PEO) for the demolition of any portion of a provincial road in Sison town, has been recalled recently to pave the way for the immediate completion of the road rehabilitation project.
The Legal Office, however, asked Sison town officials to comply with certain conditions to ensure the welfare of the residents adversely affected by the demolition of existing road pavement and scraping of soil.
Based on classification of roads of the local government code, national roads are constructed by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), the provincial road by the provincial government; and municipal roads by the municipal government.
Atty. Geraldine Baniqued, Provincial Legal Officer, reiterated that the issuance of a permit requires the LGU to assure the rehabilitation of appropriate access roads for affected households to protect their parcels of land, re-installation of street lights and construction of drainage system in the area, all of which will be shouldered by the LGU.
The CDO was issued to the local government of Sison on June 3 after the PEO reported that demolition works of the 170-meter provincial road in barangay Poblacion Central in Sison have been undertaken despite the absence of a permit.
Local authorities of Sison claimed to have written a letter to notify and ask permit from the provincial government last May 8. But the PEO said it only received the letter on May 19. Hence, no permit has been issued at the time the contractor, Sandoy Enterprises, started its excavation works last May 12.
Affected residents who attended a public hearing held last July 1 affirmed that “no public consultation” was conducted prior to the demolition.
A police report stated that a cemented portion of said provincial road cracked by a drilling machine caused a vehicular accident on May 28. The motorist said that no precautionary signage was placed in the area where the demolition works were ongoing.
Few days ago, a robbery incident was reported in a household where its gate, driveway and perimeter fence were affected by the scraping of soil, about two meters deep from the surface of the road.
The Legal Officer also asked the LGU to set up warning and directional signages in the construction site.
“Residents who are adversely affected should be protected by means of whatever appropriate procedures,” Atty. Baniqued said.
Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP) Member Danilo Uy, who was present during the public hearing, said that the project can now proceed as it might cause disadvantages to the community considering that rainy season is approaching.
Meanwhile, Dominador Padua, Sison town councilor, asked the PEO to conduct continuous inspection and monitoring of the road project as it is “a provincial road.”
A joint ocular inspection was conducted by PEO personnel and municipal officials of Sison last June 18. By Dexter A. See