THE Cagayan de Oro City government has set aside a total of P160 million to improve its drainage system amid the recurrent threat of flooding.

Mayor Vicente Emano said the money will come from the 20 percent development fund allotted in next year’s budget.

In the succeeding year, Emano said his administration will give emphasis on building a comprehensive drainage system that involves the improvement and creation of a more stable network of canals.

The plan also entails hiring engineers that have expertise in dealing with drainage problems, he said.

But as a palliative measure, Emano said small batches of funds will be released for dredging, silting and unclogging canals and creeks.

“These will be our precautionary moves for the meantime, as we prepare for natural disasters coming our way,” the mayor said.

Emano also appealed to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) to do its share in flood control mitigation by maintaining public infrastructures, like major roads.

Emano cited the roadside portion in Barangays Kauwagan and Lapasan, where poor drainage networks have been perennially blamed for the inundation in these areas.

“I call on the DPWH to also fast-track their pending road projects so that when the next storm comes, we are better prepared,” he said.

Emano advised residents to help clean their surroundings by practicing proper garbage disposal.

City Hall said city engineers have looked into the drainage problems in Barangay Lumbia and Upper Baloy, Barangay Tablon.

Councilor Emmanuel Abejuela, chairman of the committee on public works, said a survey on all barangays is ongoing to determine which area is vulnerable to flooding or lacking appropriate infrastructure against floods.

with article by Nicole Managbanag of SSC

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