Residents of a mountain barangay in Dalaguete town used to carry out their evening chores with little light.
But the tribulation that they have experienced since time immemorial is now a thing of the past with the completion of the electrification project in Sitio Binalabag, Barangay Lanao.
Attended by Gov. Hilario Davide III and Vice Gov. Agnes Magpale, the switch-on ceremony last Feb. 23 not only brought joy and pride to residents who had been longing for the project but also gave them the chance to thank Capitol officials for coming over their place to witness history unfold.
“We’re so blessed that Gov. Davide and Vice Gov. Magpale visited here despite the difficult road leading to our sitio,” said Jacinto Perpo in Cebuano.
The 45-year-old farmer said it was the first time he saw public officials visit their place and was impressed by Capitol officials taking up the challenge of the difficult trek in coming over.
For 51-year-old Ignacio Villacorta, having a governor visit their sitio is a dream come true.
“Mao gyud among damgo na mabisita mi sa mga opisyales sa Kapitolyo. Karon naa na gyud,” Villacorta said.
The Capitol shelled out P624,000 in setting up power lines, including the purchase of transformers.
In his speech, Gov. Davide said the electrification would be of great help to the residents, especially the children who would now have easier time studying their lessons at night.
The electrification project is expected to benefit 39 households in Sitio Binalabag, which has a population of 215. Its distance from the town proper is at least 27 kilometers.
The place can only be reached by habal-habal (motorcycle for hire) or foot. From its neighboring Barangay Dumalan, residents will have to walk for 1 kilometer on a narrow and rocky pathway to reach their home.
Before electricity was available, residents would use kerosene lamps and candles to light up their nights.
Vice Gov. Magpale said the electrification is a historic achievement for Binalabag residents, who should be proud of their barangay officials for their resiliency in seeking assistance for the realization of the project.
With a lot of things still needed to be done to uplift the living conditions of its residents, Magpale said the Capitol will continue to lend assistance to Sitio Binalabag particularly in road improvements and installation of a water system.
Also present in the switch-on ceremony were Dalaguete Mayor Ronald Sesante and some town councilors and barangay officials of Lanao led by village chief Jovencio Carin.
The Binalabag electrification project is facilitated by second district Congressman Wilfredo Caminero.
Meanwhile, the Capitol wrapped up its distribution of cash incentives to barangay workers in 44 towns and 7 cities, dropping its curtain in Dalaguete town, one of the last four recipient municipalities.
A total of 1,914 barangay workers in the towns of Alcoy, Boljoon, Dalaguete and Argao received cash incentives from Capitol, which started last Dec. 1, 2015.