Gov, Delta thank DU30 for P6.5-B flood control project

MINALIN, Pampanga – Gov. Lilia Pineda and Vice Governor Dennis “Delta” Pineda thanked President Rodrigo Duterte for directing the Department of Public Works and Highways to immediately implement the P6.150-billion Integrated Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation (IDRR-CCA) project that aims to ease flooding for some 300,000 residents in Pampanga’s southern towns.

The province’s top officials expressed their gratitude during the launch of the IDRR-CCA here on Tuesday.

“We get all the floods since we are downstream of the Pampanga River. Floods affect the livelihood of our people. I want to thank President Duterte for taking this problem seriously,” the governor said.

She also thanked House Speaker Gloria Macacapagal-Arroyo because it was during her term as President that the project was conceptualized. The project’s $80-million loan from South Korea was signed in 2013 while the implementation started under President Duterte.

A major feature of the project is the 33-km Third River that takes in water from northern tributaries, the Pampanga River and upstream of the Pasac River. The Korean firm Hanjin Heavy Industries and Construction Corp. will also construct three new bridges, five footbridges, eight sluice gates and 164 fish pond gates.

At the launch, Public Works Secretary Mark Villar told local officials and residents: “President Duterte is aware of the flooding problem in Pampanga. He is deeply concerned by this scenario. President Duterte does not want you to be experiencing floods.”

Vice Governor Pineda said the provincial government will help by handling the social preparations required for the relocation of more than 100 families who would be displaced by the right-of-way of the Third River. Rep. Juan Pablo Bondoc (Fourth District) said he would coordinate with the National Housing Authority to assist the informal settlers.

The DPWH has a land acquisition budget of P210.9 million for the project.

South Korean Ambassador Han Dong-man expressed hope that the project will “improve the quality of life of Kapampangans.”

Congresswoman Arroyo announced that Phase 2 of the Pampanga River Project will also begin this October through the bidding of a feasibility study to be funded also by Korea. Flood-control works in Phase 2 covers towns in Pampanga’s third and fourth districts and up to the Labangan Channel in Bulacan province.

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