June 20, 2024

An open letter to the DPWH Secretary

This pertains to the advisory issued by the Department of Public Works and Highways on the closure of the Mount Data Cliff section of the Baguio-Bontoc Road, which showed the apparent dictatorial tendencies of the agency.
The advisory states the road section will be closed starting on Oct. 25 to pave the way for its further rehabilitation following the damage it incurred during the July 27 earthquake.
The advisory has also specified which alternate routes to take based on the classifications of motor vehicles.
Together with the countless motorists and commuters affected by the rerouting, we ask:
From what office did this advisory come from? Was it from the DPWH central office, DPWH-CAR, or the DPWH Mountain Province First District Engineering Office?
How much did the contractor/s pay for this advisory so they will have unhampered working conditions?
What kind of rehabilitation works necessitated the closure? Is it widening? Is it insta-paving or rocknet slope protection? The manner of repair and cost of repair must be included in the advisory.
Is this advisory stated in the contract, in the invitation to bid or in the program of work?
Will the DPWH and/or the contractor/s subsidize the additional cost of travel including lost time? And will they do the same to the trucks hauling goods?
In a democratic society like ours, the DPWH could not simply issue a road advisory without any explanation or consultation with the stakeholders. — JUNIPER C. DOMINGUEZ, Sabangan, Mountain Province