P1.78 B needed to repair Paeng-damaged infra in Westen Visayas

ILOILO CITY—An estimated P1.78 billion is needed to repair various infrastructure damaged by severe tropical storm "Paeng" in Western Visayas.

TROPICAL cyclone 'Paeng' damaged the Paliwan Bridge, which connects Laua-an and Bugasong towns in Antique province. (Antique PIO)

The Committee on Infrastructure of the Regional Development Council (RDC)-6 passed a resolution this week urging the government to fund the repair of major bridges and roads damaged by Paeng.

“We are hoping that a fund can be allocated for the repairs,” said Iloilo City Mayor Jerry Treñas, chairman of the RDC-6 Committee on Infrastructure.

While Congress is still deliberating the national budget for fiscal year 2023, Treñas said that the resolution asking for P1.78 billion might still be included in the General Appropriations Act (GAA) for next year.

Treñas said that the resolution will be endorsed to President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri, House Speaker Ferdinand Martin Romualdez, and the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).

During a Cabinet meeting with President Marcos in Antique province last week, DPWH-6 Director Nerie Bueno disclosed that 119 infrastructures were damaged across Western Visayas -- 68 roads, 41 bridges, and 10 flood control projects.

Based on DPWH-6 data, Iloilo province needs the biggest funding with P628.83 million.

Antique needs P497 million. A big segment of the Paliwan Bridge, which connects Laua-an and Bugasong towns, collapsed, and needs P355 million to be repaired.

But Bueno suggested a new bridge be constructed.

The province of Negros Occidental needs P345.25 billion, Capiz province, P226.86 billion, and Aklan province, P80 million.