BACOLOD City – Mayor Wantan Palanca of Victorias City, Negros Occ. said he requested President Rodrigo Duterte to help develop the city’s port.
Palanca said he made the request in a chance meeting with Duterte.
But the mayor said Duterte told him that it is already too late to add the port’s development in this year’s budget.
However, Mr. Duterte promised the mayor that he will include the port when Congress starts deliberating on the 2020 national budget.
Palanca said he pointed out to Pres. Duterte the benefits of opening a new shipping route in the city to other places such as Iloilo, Boracay, Cebu, Mindoro, Batangas, Romblon, and Manila.
He explained that Victorias City has the closest crossing heading to the town of Banate in Iloilo, as the route is only 14 kilometers, compared to the 44 kilometers from Bacolod City to Iloilo City.
The mayor also pointed out his city’s strategic location as it is facing the Visayan Sea.
The port could also serve as a secondary route for vehicles which are unable to climb the mountains of Don Salvador Benedicto bound for San Carlos City and ultimately to Cebu.
He said that if tourists reach the town of Banate, it would cut travel time to Caticlan, Aklan to only 4 to 5 hours compared from Iloilo City, which takes around 6 hours.