December 5, 2023

Six of the seven Cordillera lawmakers once sought for the transfer of the director of the Department of Public Works and Highways-Cordillera for loss of trust and confidence, records obtained by journalists show.
Documents obtained by Baguio journalists revealed that the request for the transfer or replacement of DPWH-Cordillera Director Tiburcio Canlas was contained in a letter dated Sept. 10, 2019 addressed to DPWH Sec. Mark A. Villar.
The letter also sought for the assignment of a new director for DPWH-Cordillera.
Those who signed the letter were Reps. Joseph Sto. Niño Bernos of Abra; Elias Bulut, Jr., of Apayao; Solomon Chungalao of Ifugao; Allen Jesse Mangaoang of Kalinga; Maximo Dalog, Jr. of Mountain Province; and the late Nestor Fongwan, Sr. of Benguet.
Baguio Rep. Mark Go did not sign the letter.
“We, the undersigned representatives of the Cordillera Administrative Region, would like to seek for your kind indulgence to hear our unified plea and request for the immediate reshuffling of the current DPWH-CAR regional director, Engr. Tiburcio Canlas, elsewhere and the assignment of a new regional director in CAR,” read the letter to Villar.
The letter stated that Canlas could not serve the best interest of the region as evidenced by the fact that he could not address the concerns of each of the separate province effectively.
No specific incident was indicated in the letter on why the director was being accused of not effectively addressing the concerns in the provinces.
“Much as we would like to cooperate and work with him in the interest of the Cordillera as a whole, taking into consideration the provincial and district concerns of each of the province, we feel that he has come short of the expectation. Without many words to spare, we have lost our trust and confidence in him to work for the best interest of the region,” the letter added.
One of the sources who spoke on condition of anonymity, shared that the letter was supposed to serve as an eye opener for the concerned regional director to supposedly mend his ways reason that the letter was withheld and was not stamped received by Villar’s office.
The letter was supposedly received by the office the DPWH secretary in January.
The Courier tried to reach Canlas through the agency’s information officer but the latter replied through text message that the regional director opted not to comment, as he is letting those who signed the letter be the ones to speak their minds. – Harley F. Palangchao