Newly built bridge seen to boost drive to end insurgency in N. Samar

Published June 28, 2022, 12:43 PM

by Marie Tonette Marticio

TACLOBAN CITY – The newly-built Simora Bridge in Laoang, Northern Samar, one of the three bridges under the Samar Pacific Coastal Road Project (SPCR), is seen to boost the anti-insurgency campaign of the government.

The Simora Bridge is a 161-meter road project that connects the Pacific Towns of Laoang and Palapag in Northern Samar, particularly areas that were formerly considered hotbeds of insurgency.

They are also identified as Konsolidado, Kinokonsolida, Expansion, and Recovery (KKER) barangays.

The SPCRP is attributed to the Build Build Build Program of President Duterte.

It aims to achieve peace by enhancing accessibility in the delivery of goods and services and reducing the problem of isolation in areas where NPAs thrive.

Aside from Simora Bridge, two other bridges — the 31-meter Jangtud 1 Bridge and the 69-meter Jangtud 2 Bridge worth P997,500,000.74 — were built under the SPCR.

The completion of the project will eventually establish a circumferential road loop on Samar Island.

It will become a major road link between Northern Samar and Eastern Samar.

Governor Edwin Ongchuan said the project will greatly contribute to reducing poverty incidence since it will increase economic activities through improved transportation connectivity.

The province has long been dubbed as the stronghold of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-Terrorists (CNTs) in the region.

“There is an adage that says insurgency ends when the road begins. The provincial government is very optimistic that this road project will contribute to the eradication of the local armed conflict in this part of Northern Samar,” Ongchuan said.

Meanwhile, the commander of the 803rd Infantry Brigade, Colonel Perfecto Peñaredondo, said that the Simora Bridge will contribute greatly to the eradication of issues being exploited by the NPA terrorists.

Peñaredondo shared the construction of SPCRP has long been posed with threats from CNTs, which prompted the AFP and PNP to secure and thwart attacks of the NPA terrorist in their goal of sabotaging the project.

“For the past years, several uniformed personnel paid an ultimate sacrifice in protecting and ensuring the completion of the projects.”