Issue of August 11, 2019
     
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Postponed experimental Session Road closure gets green light

The city council on Monday, through Ordinance 65, s. 2019, has given the green light for the conduct of experimental closure of session road to vehicular traffic every sunday for a period of six months, to take effect upon approval of the measure in accordance with the Local Government Code of 1991.

The ordinance was submitted to the Office of City Mayor Benjamin “Benjie” Magalong for his approval.

The one-way traffic scheme is intended to decongest Session Road from traffic, to improve the air quality in the area and the city as a whole, and to encourage the residents and tourists alike to walk, in line with the city’s program on developing a healthy lifestyle through physical activities.

The upward lane beginning at the Development Bank of the Philippines Building up to the last pedestrian crossing fronting the Baguio Post Office will be closed from 6a.m. to 9p.m. during Sundays. The whole lane of the road going down towards Magsaysay avenue, including Upper and Lower Mabini Road towards Harrison Road, shall remain open to vehicular traffic.

The early termination or request for extension of the experiment was left for the city mayor to determine, subject to the guidelines provided in Section 2 of Ordinance 21, s. 2011.

Under the guidelines, all experimental schemes should not exceed a period of six months. Upon its lapse and no ordinance is enacted, the traffic scheme shall automatically revert to its status before the experiment.

A massive information drive on the proposed traffic experiment scheme should be done not less than two weeks before the experiment. Any substantial alteration or modification to the scheme during the experimental period should be made known to the public at least two days before implementation.

Before any ordinance is enacted embodying the experiment, a public hearing/consultation must be conducted by concerned authorities.

The Traffic and Transportation Management Committee (TTMC) is required to submit a preliminary report to the city mayor and the sangguniang panlungsod within the first two weeks of implementation of the experiment.

In addition, signage and barriers that meet safety standards should be in place during the period of the experiment, to be done by the TTMC in coordination with the Department of Public Works and Highways, the City Engineering Office, and other concerned agencies.

Further, the TTMC shall submit an evaluation report before the enactment of an ordinance to make the scheme permanent, or before the lapse of the six-month experiment, whichever comes first.

With health and safety as a priority, the body approved on second reading and for publication a proposed ordinance “banning the manufacture, distribution and sale of mercury-containing cosmetic products in the city of Baguio.”

Penned by City Vice Mayor Faustino Olowan, the proposed measure aims to protect the public consumers by stopping and preventing similar incidents in the future, like the recent findings of the Ecological Waste Coalition of the Philippines as reported by the media on the widespread selling and distribution of cosmetic products containing high mercury and lead in the city. The prohibition/regulation is in consonance with the provisions of the Consumers Act of 1992 and the Food and Drug Administration Act of 2009.

Results of sampling conducted by the group on cosmetics products sold in the city revealed that 14 out of 15 skin whitening creams sold in the market contain high mercury concentration or have reached the range of 970 to 23,700 parts per million limit set by the ASEAN cosmetic directives, which is 1ppm. High lead contents were also found in lipsticks being sold from P50 to 280 each.

Meanwhile, the body has commended Jemma “jm” olsim madinno for her act of bravery and prompt action that helped in the arrest of a sexual offender.

The collective resolution stated that madinno, while in a jeepney from La Trinidad to Baguio City last June 2, did not hesitate to record using her cell phone an adult man who was sexually molesting a minor. She took the video out of concern for the young girl, for being aware that she was witnessing a case of child molestation, and for thinking that it was the right thing to do, even at great peril to herself.

On that same day, with her friends while at the Burnham Park, she again encountered the same man together with a minor doing similar malicious acts. madinno could not bear what she saw and took more photos. She wasted no time and immediately reported the incident to the police authorities. She then uploaded the pictures and videos of the incident on social media which greatly helped in the identification and apprehension of the alleged offender, who was identified as a 33-year old chess and damath coach of the 10-year-old victim.

“The heroic act of madinno is both courageous and admirable. Her deed deserves recognition and emulation and should be an example to the citizenry to be always alert and to immediately report to authorities any crime they have witnessed,” the resolution stated.

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