The Department of Public Works and Highways have already submitted a proposal on the dredging of the Marilao-Meycauayan-Obanso River System (MMORS).
DPWH-Region III director Antonio Molano, Jr. said that they have already submitted a P1.9-billion proposal to dredge the MMORS which would span about 43 kilometers and on a 30-km dike improvement to aid the informal settlers along the riverbank in relocation.
This developed as Governor Wilhelmino Alvarado called for an immediate support from the national government regarding the rehabilitation of MMORS which was tagged as among the world’s 30 dirtiest rivers by international environment watchdog Blacksmith Institute.
“Everyone is looking up to the north. It is the time to show our region’s development and progress. But how can we fully promote that, if there’s a smudge on its image?” said Alvarado.
Alvarado, who is also the chairman of the Sectoral Committee on Infrastructure Development of the Regional Development Council (RDC), said he already gave instructions to DPWH to submit a program proposal together with its budgetary requirement for the rehabilitation of MMORS during the last RDC meeting.
Acceding to Molano, the P1.9 billion fund is “significant” in improving the said river system as it directly flows to the Manila Bay.
Also, Alvarado added that the construction of a sanitary landfill is crucial for the dredging of the heavily silted and polluted river system.
He said the spoils of the dredging should be dumped properly into a safe and contained location because the MMORS is saturated with hazardous heavy metals like mercury, lead and arsenic from surrounding plants.
“This project needs a strong political will in order for it to succeed. We also need to put everything in due process, make public consultation and proper information dissemination particularly in the matter of relocating the settlers within the riverbanks. It is also important to develop a sanitary landfill in Bulacan where the spoils of the dredging will be properly dumped,” he said.
Dredging Today Staff, March 19, 2012;