“VEHICULAR TRAFFIC and peace and order issues will be the city’s major headaches.”
These perennial social concerns will be effectively addressed with the creation of a multi-sectoral council, according to Angeles City mayoralty bet and KAMBILAN official candidate Alex Caugurian.
Speaking at a dialogue with residents at the densely populated barangay Virgen delos Remedios on Monday, Cauguiran said he anticipates these social problems as a result of the massive investments and infrastructure development at the Clark Freeport Zone.
“The waves of opportunities are now rising in Angeles because the national government’s thrust is to make Central Luzon the country’s new investment and infrastructure hub with the Clark Freeport as the focal point,” Cauguiran said.
“It will just be a matter of time that vehicular traffic and peace and order concerns, along with common issues like garbage collection and sanitation, housing public education and health services will be our major headaches,” he added.
The proposed council shall be composed of mayors of the cities of Angeles, Mabalacat, and San Fernando, and the municipalities of Capas, Bamban, and Magalang; a representative of Clark locators association; and representatives of Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA), Clark Development Corp. (CDC), and Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC).”
The leading mayoralty candidate also said a “formal mechanism that synchronizes the use of financial, physical, and manpower resources to address these social concerns aggressively and comprehensively is badly needed.”
“These LGUs will bear the greater brunt of the social impact of the economic boom triggered by Clark, and we certainly cannot shoulder all these problems alone. The private sector, the government agencies and locators in Clark must pitch in their share of the solutions to these problems,” Cauguiran said.
The former Clark airport executive cited the need for representation of the BCDA and CDC in the council as they are mandated by law “to establish a mechanism in coordination with the appropriate local government units to effect meaningful consultation regarding the plans, programs and projects” related to the development of the former American base lands.
“Vehicular traffic,” Cauguiran stressed, “is one of the most pressing problems that must be addressed. We must learn our lessons from Metro Manila where traffic congestion reportedly results in daily revenue loss of about P3.5 billion. We certainly do not want to have the same experience here, and the best way to avoid such disaster is to start implementing medium and long term solutions now.”
Cauguiran, also a former chief-of-staff at the city hall, added that the issue of peace and order is another concern that requires concerted efforts from all LGUs whose territorial jurisdictions have direct ingress to and egress from the freeport.
“Installations of CCTVs at the boundaries of connecting jurisdiction interfaced with the LGUs command centers and closer operational coordination among police stations are also essential and should be addressed comprehensively,” Cauguiran said, adding that investors and tourists abound when an orderly and efficient flow of vehicular traffic and a safe environment for all are ensured.
Cauguiran is the former Clark airport president widely known for his results-oriented managerial skills and credited with the increase in flights, destinations and number of passengers at the so-called premier airport of the North. He is running under the Kambilan Party affiliated with incumbent Pampanga governor Lilia Pineda and supported by an overwhelming majority of the card-bearing members of the Partido Abe Kapampangan, a party he helped established in 2012.