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City officials requested the administration of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) to willfully allow the installation, repair and maintenance of internet and telephone connections at St. Joseph Village, Fort Del Pilar, Upper Market Subdivision, Camp Allen and other barangays declared as part of the military reservations in the city.
Under Resolution No. 497, series of 2021, local legislators stated that the previous action of the PMA administration in disallowing the installation, repair and maintenance of internet and telephone connections in the declared military reservations is reportedly prejudicial to the welfare and development of the students and the workers who are living in the said communities.
Further, the council added that in this most trying time, all premises of the city must be considered and that certain restrictions must be set aside for people to continue living a normal life in the present unusual and challenging circumstances triggered by the continuous prevalence of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
Barangays St. Joseph Village, Camp Allen, Fort del Pilar and Upper Market Subdivision are areas in the city that are within the declared military reservation and are under the jurisdiction of the PMA.
As such, aside from other prohibitions that are being strictly enforced, PMA does not allegedly allow the installation of telephone and internet lines to the residences in the same.
The council noted that a particular case is at St. Joseph Village barangay where the materials were already delivered but the telephone and internet connection was not allowed by PMA to be installed and pursued.
According to the body, the lack or absence of internet connection in particular areas deprived the students in attending their online classes and the workers to accomplish their work from home tasks following the enforcement of such strategies to prevent the rapid spread of the deadly virus that might cause the local health facilities from being compromised and the frontliners from being unduly stressed.
The council argued that because of the ongoing prevalence of the health crisis where physical contact at work and in school had been restricted and meetings, works and classes are being done virtually or online, it is imperative that residents be given full access to telephone and internet connections for online classes and work from home schemes so that there will be continuity in the conduct of classes in the discharge of duties and responsibilities by the employees and officers.
The council noted that both the government and the private sectors have to make the appropriate adjustments to be able to conform with the current situation because of the existence of the ongoing pandemic so that there will be no undue prejudice that will be imposed on students and workers, especially those living within the military reservations as they deserve the full access to their classrooms and work places for them to be able to cope up with the learning schemes and workflow in their offices.
The body expressed hope that the PMA will give in to the aforesaid request for humanitarian consideration due to the enforcement of certain restrictions by both the national and local inter-agency task forces for the management of emerging infectious diseases.
By Dexter A. See
Photo by Armando M. Bolislis