July 16, 2024

■  Ofelia C. Empian 

The recent road openings at the heart of Ifugao helps in connecting the municipalities, as well as nearby provinces and in shortening travel distance for motorists and commuters.

The recently-opened 7.7-kilometer Boliwong-Abinuan-Nattum-Alimit Road connects the towns of Lagawe and Mayoyao and is seen to cut the travel distance by 21 kilometers.

The travel distance from the central town of Lagawe to Mayoyao via Banaue is 64 kilometers, but with the road opening via Abinuan, the distance is reduced to 43 kilometers.

Boliwong and Abinuan are barangays of Lagawe while Nattum and Alimit are barangays of Mayoyao town. 

Also opened was the equally scenic Halag-Maguitawa-Dulao Road which is a completed gravel road. Halag and Maguitawa are within Aguinaldo while Dulao is within Lagawe. 

Ifugao Rep. Solomon Chungalao said these road openings are crucial as it connects the far-flung barangays of Ifugao to one another, and it shortens the travel time of residents going to Lagawe.

Chungalao recalled that during the tenure of then President Gloria Arroyo, they were surveying Ifugao in a chopper when the latter saw the rolling hills straddling Aguinaldo and Mayoyao towns.

He informed Arroyo that the area is the heart of Ifugao but there were no roads to pass through the area.

“That’s when the President said that there should be a road that connects these towns together. Years later, we now have these roads,” Chungalao said. 

His office is currently lobbying for the allocation of budget for the concreting of the Halag-Maguitawa-Dulao Road under the road program of various agencies.

Efforts are also being done to convert the roads as national roads.

Gov. Jerry Dalipog has urged the residents to continue supporting the construction of the road especially with the concreting of the Halag-Maguitawa-Dulao Road.

“The most important right now is the road right-of-way. If we want our roads to be converted, then residents together with local officials must work together for us not to have a problem with encroachment on the carriage way,” Dalipog said.

To further connect the Ifugao towns, the establishment of the Maguitawa-Dulao Bridge in Barangay Nattum in Mayoyao and Dulao in Lagawe is also being projected to be completed next year.

Dalipog said the bridge project would connect district I composed of Hungduan, Tinoc, Asipulo, Kiangan, Lamut, Hingyon, and Lagawe and district II composed of Banaue, Mayoyao, Aguinaldo, and Alfonso Lista, as well as the neighboring Nueva Vizcaya and Isabela provinces.