City dads mull clustered “long-overdue” MRF in the metro

(DG file)

By: Emme Rose Santiagudo

ILOILO City Councilor and Liga ng mga Barangay federation president Irene Ong said they will look into the possible establishment of a clustered materials recovery facility (MRF) per district in the metro.

Pungkuan namon nga every district may ara MRF, butangan da gamit, machinery para dira na lang. I will plan like in City Proper district, we will have a common area for the MRF,” Ong said.

Councilor Ely Estante raised the lack of MRF in city barangays during the regular session of the Sangguniang Panlungsod on Tuesday.

“This is an observation that may happen. There are groups who threaten that they will file a case against barangays that do not have an MRF,” he stressed.

Estante emphasized that barangays should put up MRF because it is a requirement and mandated by the law.

He pointed out a policy in Barangay East Baluarte in Molo where households are provided with plastic bags for segregation as a possible policy that can be replicated by the other barangays.

“In Brgy. East Baluarte, there is a mode that every household are provided with three plastic garbage bags two times a week for recyclable, non-biodegradable and biodegradable wastes. If that barangay has an idea that they will provide bags to all households, mas mayo guro if ma-estudyohan ini sang City Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO) and sang aton Liga ng mga Barangay president,” he said.

Ong welcomed the suggestion of Estante, admitting that not all barangays in Iloilo City have their own MRF due to the lack of space.

“The city government together with the environment committee and the barangay level will study this matter again because some of the barangays in the city proper don’t have MRF because they don’t have a space,” he said.

An annual report of the Commission on Audit (COA) showed that all 180 barangays in the metro have no functional material recovery facilities to segregate and reuse their solid wastes, thereby violating the Republic Act 9003 or Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000.

Republic Act 9003 orders all LGUs to decentralize garbage collection and requires all barangays to have their own MRF.

“Non-establishment of MRFs in every barangay defeated the goals and objectives of the Solid Management Act in ensuring the environmentally-sound collection, sorting, segregation, composting, and recycling of wastes,” the COA report said.

In their report, COA urged the city government to strictly impose and monitor the establishment of recovery facilities in barangays.