Towards a more responsible, disciplined Ilonggos

By Emme Rose Santiagudo

The city government of Iloilo is now gearing up its efforts to inculcate the culture of discipline among Ilonggos.

As the city progresses, the local government sees the need to ensure that Ilonggos remain as responsible citizens by following the simple traffic and anti-littering ordinances in the city.

Last November, the city government deputized 30 green guards who will oversee and protect public areas from vandals.

According to Mayor Jerry Treñas, the green guards will protect areas where the city government conducted tree planting activities including the areas under the beautification program of the city government.

Later on, the green guards became key in apprehending several violators who destroyed palms trees and sunflowers planted along the Diversion road in Mandurriao district.

The sunflower pickers were charged with malicious mischief and proved that the mayor is serious in disciplining those who continue to trample the beautification program of the city government.

“The beautification project is very special to me because it is one of the reasons why I ran for mayor. I bought some of the seeds using my own money from my salary because of the lack of budget. I would like to emphasize that I am serious about this discipline we are imposing,” he said.

Additional green guards were also hired by the city government following the trash that were left a day after the opening salvo of Dinagyang 2020 last week.

Just in time for Dinagyang, the city government officials also promoted the “Clean as you go” (CLAYGO) practice through the signing and pledge of commitment.

Councilor Rudolph Jeffrey Ganzon proponent of the Resolution No. 2019-654 passed by the Sangguniang Panlungsod (SP) last year pushed for the practice of CLAYGO among establishments in the metro.

“As we campaign for a cleaner and more responsible city, it is just right that our city officials and departments be in support especially that we are promoting a lot of festivals so mas maayo gid nga makita sang aton mga bisita nga kita mismo nga mga leaders gapanguna gid maninlo sa siyudad,’ he said.

CLAYGO is a practice that encourages everyone to make cleaning as part of our daily routine and way of life.

Last January 16, the city government also launched a traffic management campaign in the city’s main gateway or the 14-kilometer stretch of Senator Benigno Aquino Jr. Avenue in Mandurriao district also known as the Diversion Road.

Meant to address the congestion in the booming city, the city government designated Diversion Road as the city’s first “Traffic Discipline Zone” where local ordinances and national road laws will be strictly implemented.

“We have to show them that here in Iloilo, once they enter our city, we follow traffic rules and regulation. This is important because those laws and ordinances have been with us for ages already and we have to remind again all our constituents,” he said.

Personnel from the Land Transportation Office (LTO), Philippine National Police (PNP), Public Safety and Traffic Management Office (PSTMO) and HPG will monitor the area from 6:30 a.m. until 10 p.m.

In a follow-up interview with the mayor on Monday, part of his dream to become one of the most livable cities in the country is to develop the culture of discipline among Ilonggos.

Ang aton thrust of disciplined Ilonggos dala na sa aton liveable cities nga damgoParyas sa Benigno Aquino, dira kita masugod because that is the longest nga road network kay look at what happened to Metro Manila and look at what’s happening to Metro Cebu, if we don’t discipline our drivers and residents basi matabo man na sa aton,” he emphasized.

He emphasized that it is also urgent time that Ilonggos should be responsible enough to keep the city clean and trash-free.

Sa basura, it is really about time na bululigan ta man ang siyudad ta. Ang ginalagas ta gid di is really ang culture, amo na nga maintidihan ta man nga indi na madali-dali but, we have to start somewhere, we have to start somewhere unless sige-sige na lang ni,” he said.

Recently, the Department of Tourism (DOT) announced that the city was among the awardees of the prestigious Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Clean Tourist City Award 2020-2022.

According to the tourism department, the prestigious award was presented to cities with the initiative to beautify their public areas, improve the environment and sanitation, enhance urban spaces, and promote their natural man-made attractions.