The P93-million beach wall project in Carabao Island, Romblon by the Department of Public Works and Highways is now the bone of contention with the Mimaropa Regional Development Council (RDC) and the Department of Tourism.
Mimaropa, composed of Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon and Palawan, is sounding the alarm over the construction of a concrete seawall along the Carabao Island, with white beach and tourist destination.
The residents of the place alerted the RDC which in turn brought out its unequivocal opposition to it and was supported by DOT, as the DPWH failed to inform them about the project.
One of the RDC members, DOT recently wrote to DPWH asking for explanation about the project.
The place is under San Jose municipality with white sand beaches like Boracay, Aklan.
Christopher Morales, tourism director for Mimaropa, said the DOT did not endorse the project, asking: “How can we approve a project without proper study and there were no documents for us to review like environmental and feasibility studies?”
The district engineer of the DPWH in Romblon could not be reached for a comment but the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), which also sits in the RDC, inspected the project on Tuesday, Dec. 15 following the reports of the residents that there were large boulders and heavy equipment on the San Jose beach.
Rodne Galicha, an environmentalist, tossed the matter to RDC as private sector, saying that the project began on Dec. 2, with a target completion on Nov. 7, 2021.
Sunwest Construction and Development Corp., which awarded the project and owned by the family of Ako Bicol Rep. Elizaldy Co, has bagged another project in Romblon to construct the Magdiwang-San Fernando cross-country road.