Isabela lawmaker hits road project

October 09, 2018

“OVERPRICED, half-finished, anti-environment, and full of irregularities.”

This was how House Appropriations Committee Vice Chairperson and Isabela Third District Rep. Napoleon Dy described the P1.6 billion, ‘Ilagan-Divilacan’ road project, a major infrastructure project of the Isabela provincial government that allegedly remains “half-completed” more than two years after it was started.

“The project is only half-finished after the provincial government had already spent 1.6 billion pesos.

“If you do the math, that means that the administration of Gov. Faustino ‘Bojie’ Dy III spent around 39 million pesos for each kilometer,” said the legislator.

Once completed, the 82-kilometer road will connect Ilagan City to the towns of Divilacan and Maconacon.

It starts in Barangay Cabisera 10 and Barangay Sindon Bayabo in Ilagan City and ends in Barangay Dicatian in the coastal town of Divilacan.

According to the solon, “the project is obviously overpriced.

“Even the initial costing of the project, which allocated 20 million pesos per kilometer for road opening––not including concreting––is higher than the standards set by the DPWH (Department of Public Works and Highways).”

The legislator also questioned why the project was bid out to a third party contractor, Quezon City-based CM Pancho Construction, when P1 billion, out of the provincial government’s P2.6 billion loan for the construction of the road was earmarked for the purchase of construction equipment for the province.

“Where is the billion-peso worth of heavy equipment that was purchased with the funds?

“How much more does the provincial government need to complete this project, which is only half-done?” asked Rep. Dy, noting the construction for the project was begun in March 2016.

The Isabela representative also demanded to know what the provincial government had done with the trees that were cut down to make way for the road network, which will pass through and along the Isabela National Park and Protected Area in the Sierra Madre mountain range.

“This is another concern with regard to this road, which could have an adverse effect on the environment in the area,” added the lawmaker.

The congressman said that Gov. Bojie Dy and Vice Gov. Tonypet Albano must “come clean regarding this project, for the sake of transparency.”  

“This is not about politics, this is about accountability and good governance. The billions loaned by the provincial government will be paid for by Isabela taxpayers, and they deserve to know what happened in this project.”

The incumbent governor is reportedly eyeing a return to the provincial capitol as a candidate for Vice Governor in the upcoming 2019 polls, together with running mate Isabela First District Rep. Rodolfo ‘Rodito’ Albano III, who will run for governor.