By: Emme Rose Santiagudo
Starting today, September 26, 2019, all motor bancas plying the Iloilo City to Guimaras and vice versa route will temporarily dock at the Old Bacolod-Iloilo Fast Craft Terminal along Muelle Loney Street in City Proper district, according to Public Safety and Transportation Management Office (PSTMO) Jeck Conlu.
Conlu said the temporary transfer of the operations of the motor bancas in Parola Wharf will be done to give way to the dredging operations on the mouth of the Iloilo River.
“Ang rason ngaa masaylo sila temporarily, maximum of two weeks kay ang ginadungka-an dira sa Parola Wharf i-dredge na ina starting Thursday man,” he said in an interview on Tuesday.
Initially, Conlu announced that the docking area will be in front of the Customs Building alongside Muelle Loney but due to the presence of barriers and beautification projects on the area, they decided to transfer it to the Old Bacolod-Iloilo Fast Craft Terminal instead.
The PSTMO head said the dredging operation is expected to run for one to two weeks.
Conlu underscored the need to dredge the Iloilo River to ensure the safety of the motor bancas navigating along the river.
“Ang aton Iloilo River dugay na wala ma-dredge so as per request ni Senator Franklin Drilon sa Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) madredge kita kay naga-nabaw na ang aton river. “Sang time sang Iloilo Strait tragedy may nagbara da nga isa ka roll-on/roll-off (RoRo) vessel,” he furthered.
Upon the instruction of Mayor Jerry Treñas, Conlu said that tents will be installed on the new docking site to ensure the convenience of the passengers commuting from Guimaras and Iloilo.
“Ang order ni mayor nga i-make sure mangin convenient ang mga pasahero so butangan dira sang team halin sa PSTMO kag Philippine National Police (PNP). Maprovide man ang city government sang tent dira para sa mga pasahero,” he said.
Conlu said that the Freedom Grandstand along Muelle Loney will serve as the temporary ticketing booth for the passengers.