"What this Country needs is not a change OF men but a change IN men" March 1980

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Mindanao Railway Bill Hearing Suspended

Discussions on proposed legislation to create a railway system connecting several provinces in Mindanao were suspended Tuesday after government officials failed to provide sufficient information about the project’s viability.

Senator Richard Gordon, chairman of the committee on government corporations and public enterprises, suspended Tuesday’s public hearing after representatives of the Department of Transportation and Communication (DoTC) and National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) failed to answer his questions about the project’s feasibility.

Gordon asked for actual figures on how the proposed railroad system, which seeks to connect the cities of Cagayan De Oro, Iligan, Zamboanga, General Santos, and Davao, would affect residents in the area, and proof that the project’s advantages would outweigh any disadvantages.

However, DoTC Undersecretary for Mindanao Railways Guiling Mamondiong admitted that he could provide the figures Gordon sought at present because the feasibility study on the railway system conducted by the agency is being revised and will not be out until June.

Gordon said he was "disappointed" at the officials’ failure to provide the statistics he sought and told them they should have prepared the data attending the Senate hearing.

"Dapat handa kayo pagpunta ninyo rito [You should be prepared when you come here]. You are not our enemy. We want you to help us craft the bill," Gordon said to the NEDA and DoTC officials at the hearing.

"You are the experts; act like the experts," he admonished.

Aside from suspending the hearing, Gordon also requested that officials from the Department of Trade and Industry be invited to the next hearing to answer questions on whether or not a railway system will help enhance trade in the target area.

Five measures providing for the creation of a corporation to own and operate a railroad and transportation system in Mindanao have been filed in the Senate. One of these bills, Senate Bill 2097, was filed by Gordon.

Gordon suspends Senate hearings on Mindanao rail system bill
‘You should be prepared,’ senator tells execs
First Posted 13:41:00 04/22/2008
Andreo Calonzo, Contributor


Blogger joshua said...

pls senator, help us here in mindanao especially here in davao city to have a mindanao railway system, thanks

11:31 PM


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