How much more worse?

Flood in Bangkal

Flood in Bangkal, photo by Jojie Alcantara

From the time I posted my Venice of the south? piece last April, Davao City has had a couple more floods, and Dabawenyos simply accept it as a fact of life here. But the other night’s flash flood — and the rain wasn’t even that heavy — caused loss of lives (25 as of this writing) and severe damage to property.

We can’t do anything about nature, but we certainly can do something about public infrastructure. Specifically, the local government unit of Davao City can and should. But what has it done?

How much more worse than this disaster is needed to happen before the government gets its act together?

People need to ask the difficult questions, otherwise, this government will simply get away with their ineptness at anticipating crises. Here’s one question: What happened to the money borrowed from LandBank for public infrastructure? This was reported on in 2009. And here’s another one: Why would the mayor say on TV that the city has no budget for flood control? What about the previous mayor’s allegedly unaudited intelligence fund?

Protect the environment!

Nature is trying to tell us something here. If we mess with the natural balance of things, we will pay the consequences. Wait…let me be more specific: the less privileged in society will bear the brunt of the consequences.

The city’s environment code has to be given more teeth, and law-abiding implementers. The city is growing exponentially, and with that comes greater demand for housing and other types of civil developments. That is a good thing for everyone concerned, certainly. However, we must always keep the natural environment in mind before proceeding with more buildings and roads and other public works.

It has been done successfully in other countries. All we need to do is learn from them.

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2 Responses to “How much more worse?”

  1. Isa says:

    They must do something to prevent disasters like this from happening again. A good solid plan/project para irepair and idevelop ang drainage system – dapat ilaha jud na buhaton. Dili nang manumbag lang para malahi ang attention sa mga tao.

  2. Joe says:

    Ironically, Davao City has now become microscopically small despite its actual humungous size because of its poor public infrastructure that are not up to date to modern lifestyle and use. What have the urban planners of the city been doing lately? The recent flash flood that devastated four low-lying areas in the city manifest the true value of living condition of neglect and tolerance of decrepitude in city’s engineering standard. DAVAO is a city of GIGANTIC SIZE, potential to become the best metropolis in the world, but sad to say URBAN PLANNING is not on its main agenda. They don’t realize that the money they declare for charity over and over again is sufficient enough to create ways and means in preventing life-threatening disaster. Wake up Davao before the South of Venice will totally happen and submerge our entire city. God bless us all!

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