By: Emme Rose Santiagudo
WHILE some vendors and stakeholders welcomed the proposed P866-million Iloilo Central Market upgrading in a public consultation on Nov 5, 2018, other personalities still oppose the plan saying that it is “lavish, ambitious, and a race against time.”
Rex Donasco, president of Association of Stall Owners and Transient Vendors (ASTRAVEN) at Central Market, said the redevelopment plan is purely ambitious.
“Ang plan is next to impossible and purely ambitious. Balabagan gid ni namon, ang kinahanglan i-renovate lang mas grabe ang sitwasyon sang Super. Ngaa Central Market gid ginatuyo nila?” Donasco said.
He added that renovation and repair are enough to solve the problems of Central Market.
“Ang problema gid namon is ang drainage. The drainage would only cost P50 million and may manami ka na nga drainage. Hindi na to kinahanglan ang redevelopment plan nga gina-propose nila,” he added.
Donasco’s grievance jived with the sentiments of City Councilor Armand Parcon who said that the redevelopment plan is “a race against time.”
“Vendors in the Central Market reiterated that there is no need to totally demolish the Central Market edifice. What they want are essential needs such as to repair its leaking roofs because daw tsunami. Prioritize the wet sections, rehabilitate faulty drainage facilities, repair dilapidated cues, improve sanitation, establishment of material recovery facilities and repainting of the area,” Parcon said.
He added that he would support the plan as long as the redevelopment plan is practical and not lavish.
“I can join the race if it’s for the benefit of the general welfare. I will support it as long as it’s practical, as long there is a necessity, affordable, not lavish, and will go through tedious process,” he added.
In a consultative meeting on Monday, the city government presented the P866.972-million Iloilo Central Market Redevelopment Plan to the public that is expected to attract more clients, including tourists, local and national and will therefore generate more income, profits, and jobs.
Policies were also enumerated in the plan such as no privatization, no displacement of existing stall holders including identified transients, no increase in market fees, and no new big players.
City Administrator Hernando Galvez said the plan would not only cause positive changes in vendors and the entire Iloilo City but will also solve problems on traffic and congestion.
“Damo mabulig sa aton. Indi lang merkado ang ginalantaw sang aton mayor kundi ang kabug-usan. Ma-address ang traffic, kag mangin compliant kita sa mga law nga napabay-an na,” Galvez said.