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LA TRINIDAD, Benguet– Local officials and indigenous peoples expressed satisfaction on the programmed P80 million works along the Bulo creek to help in addressing the perennial flooding in the valley, particularly in the strawberry farm, so as not to affect the productivity of the agriculture industry stakeholders.
Indigenous Peoples Mandatory Representative (IPMR) Pendon Thompson stated that based on the project plans and specifications presented by the concerned public works officials during a recent consultation by the local government purposely to look into the details of the multi-million project, it appears that the earlier design of the proposed works on the Bulo creek prepared by experts from HEDCOR, Inc. was the one that was followed by the public works department in the provision of the funds for the same.
He added that the primary purpose of the consultation called among the indigenous peoples, municipal officials and public works officials is simply to ascertain if HEDCOR’s plans and design for the flood mitigation project was adopted as this was seen to be the most feasible solution to put an end to the perennial flooding in the valley during heavy downpour.
Further, Thompson explained that La Trinidad is an ancestral domain, thus, the ancestral domain owners through the La Trinidad Indigenous Peoples Organization (LTIPO), has the right to protect the state of the environment and for the group to be informed and consulted, especially on mitigation measures during the construction of the project.
The IPMR disclosed that a major component of the flood mitigation project along Bulo creek is the installation of 2-meter diameter storm pipes with a length of approximately over 400 meters to siphon the huge of volume of water from various tributaries and discharge this into the Balili River through an outlet that will not run counter to the flow of the water of the main river system.
HEDCOR’s hydrology report and flood mitigation study was an offshoot of Resolution No. 176, series of 2016, authored by Board member and Councilor Nestor Fongwan, Jr. requesting the company’s assistance in the conduct of a feasibility study to ascertain the appropriate solution to the perennial flooding in the valley that affects the productivity of the farmers in the strawberry farm which is the most affected by the flooding caused by heavy rains.
Thompson expressed his gratitude to the officials of the Department of Public Works and Highways–Benguet First District Engineering Office (DPWH-BFDEO) for their willingness to share to the local officials, the indigenous peoples and the concerned stakeholders the detailed plans and specifications of the flood mitigation project that will be implemented along strategic portions of the Bulo creek because the realization of the multi-million project will definitely translate to the better productivity of the farmers since their produce will no longer be submerged by the flood waters in the valley.
He also recognized the support of Benguet caretaker congressman and Anti-Crime and Terrorism through Community Involvement and Support (ACT-CIS) Party-list Rep. Eric Yap in sourcing out the funds to ensure the implementation of the very important flood mitigation project in the municipality that will be beneficial to the indigenous peoples and the public in general. By HENT