Cebu province’ municipalities will now be able to speed up local economic development and poverty reduction through a coordinated road investment.
This was one of the programs given full attention when Governor Hilario P. Davide III called for sectoral meetings with the members of the Provincial Development Council (PDC) last May 21.
The PDC has five (5) sectoral committees. Each committee is chaired by a private sector representative and co-chaired by a local chief executive. In the sectoral meeting, the mayors elected themselves to co-chair the various sectoral committees.
Gov. Davide said the meetings follow his participative style of governance. He stated that the mayors and the private sector representatives represent the interest of their respective constituents. Hence, these proposed projects and programs are responsive to the needs of each Cebuano.
The Coordinating Road Investments for Development (CRI+D) was launched in August last year. The Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry and The Asia Foundation (TAF) are assisting the Capitol on the province-wide implementation of this project.
CRI+D, which is an hexpanded version of CRID, is aimed at realizing investments on roads to improve delivery of goods and services in Cebu, Bohol, Surigao Del Norte, Guimaras and Surigao Del Sur.
The Capitol through its Planning and Development Office (PPDO) has completed the inventories of Roads Database of six municipalities namely Argao, Oslob, Badian, Alegria, Alcoy and Alcantara.
Strategic Road Links using Value Chain Analysis have been identified in these pilot areas.
Other municipalities are given comprehensive trainings particularly on Geographic Information System (GIS) by CCCI.
The GIS will help LGUs fast-track the completion of the Roads Database in the whole province as this would help identify issues and gaps in the current road investment programming of government agencies and LGUs in the municipal level.
In collaboration with the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) Region VII, and the Coalition for Change partnerships of TAF and the Australian Government through the CCCI, CRI+D program now includes roads and infrastructure investments. Infrastructure investments are significant conduits to achieve a rationalized delivery of social services, commerce and development.
Since not all roads can be improved or rehabilitated by the government all at once due to lack of resources, CRI+D use Value Chain Analysis to determine which road links are to be prioritized.
Thus, the PDC adopted the key economic drivers and subsectors recommended by the private sector taken out of the multi-sectoral workshop last December.
These are tourism; shipbuilding; high value agroforestry, marine products, and poultry-livestock including processed meat; furniture-gifts-toys-houseware; and creative industry.
In their meeting, the infrastructure committee endorsed a resolution to adopt the prioritization scheme for strategic road links and other infrastructure investments in the province of Cebu based on the above-listed economic drivers.
Currently, the PPDO reported that six municipalities already completed their GIS-based road mapping. Others are 80 percent complete while some did not avail of the program.
PPDO Officer-in-Charge Benigno Christopher Lucero said with the mayors’ participation in the sectoral committees, they will be made aware on the progress of the programs and projects in their respective towns or component cities.
May Elizabeth Ybañez, executive director of CCCI and co-chair of the PDC infrastructure and utilities development committee, said that the GIS mapping is a useful tool for future planning and investment.
“GIS map will give us information whether the road needed rehabilitation or widening,” she said.
She also stated that once the GIS maps are available they will present it to the regional line agencies for possible source of funding.
In line with this, they also endorsed another resolution to adopt the prioritization criteria of the line agencies in funding strategic road links and other infrastructure investments in the province of Cebu.
Ybañez said this will ensure that whatever road projects they will endorse to the line agencies fall within their own criteria of prioritized projects.