Private stakeholders sign manifesto to support Boracay rehab

By Karen Bermejo

April 12, 2018, 7:43 pm

BORACAY ISLAND, Aklan -- A manifesto to support the rehabilitation of the island has been signed by the private stakeholders in Boracay on Thursday.

The manifesto signing was initiated by the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA), an attached agency of the Department of Tourism.

Pocholo Paragas, TIEZA’s chief operating officer, on Thursday said the manifesto shows the commitment of the private stakeholders in hastening the rehabilitation of the island, particularly the cleanup of the island’s drainage system.

“This is to show that everybody is working together to solve the drainage problem,” he said.

In the manifesto, the stakeholders representing different businesses on the island pledged to volunteer their employees as additional manpower and resources to the rehabilitation of the island, including declogging and backfilling of the drainage and problematic outfalls.

The group also committed to report illegal structures and illegal connections to the drainage to TIEZA and the regulatory office.

The stakeholders also called on to cut off the utilities of establishments illegally connecting to the drainage.

Part of their commitment also is the continuous monitoring and sustainable development of the island.

If immediate action to address the drainage problem would not be done, he said the closure might be prolonged.

But with the commitment of the private sector, it could help shorten the temporary closure of Boracay, Paragas said.

The island is ordered closed for tourists for six months starting April 26 to give way for its rehabilitation.

Meanwhile, Paragas said TIEZA would act as the regulatory authority for the sewerage system in Boracay as a result of their meeting with the two water utilities -- Boracay Island Water Company and Boracay Tubi Systems Inc. on Wednesday.

Paragas said the two companies have also committed to help in fast-tracking the cleanup operation in Boracay’s drainage system.

“I want them to comply with their commitment to clean the drainage system,” added Paragas.

TIEZA is in-charge of the construction of the island’s drainage system.

They are currently implementing the Phase II of the project with a budget of more than PHP1 billion. (PNA)

Photo by Karen Bermejo