Barangay leader laments market mess up

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Monday, January 20, 2014

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet -- Puguis barangay chief Sonny Balanoy is supporting complaints of residents here.

Balanoy endorsed a petition made by residents complaining about the recent move of farmers to trade at the nearby Farmers Center, causing confusion and raising fears in the area.

"On January 11 this year, we are startled when suddenly; ten wheeler trucks, carts and other vegetable vehicles are rushing to and fro at the Farmers Commodities & SME Center, located near the Elementary School," the petition read.


Last week, farmers were forced out of the public market parking area and were asked to transact business at the Puguis Farmers Center despite pleas for extension.

"We learned from the news then that these vegetable trucks were instructed to move out of Km. 5 and transfer to the said establishment in our barangay. Business establishments may find this sudden transfer of vegetables as opportunity but as peace-loving residents of our barangay, we deem it as not worthy enough to sacrifice our peace and order in the barangay," Balanoy said.

"To sight a few of our fears, we know that this vegetable trading will also increase the crime rate in our barangay, it will also affect the cleanliness considering the trimmings, the garbage from the trading in itself. We love our children. Since it is near the Puguis Elementary School and our small children walks to school, we fear for the probable vehicular accidents that may happen especially when we consider that these big trucks are loaded with vegetables and they all seem to rush.

On the first day, carts are also plying the road," residents pointed out in the petition.

Residents lamented there was no public consultation on the move to transfer trading at the Farmers Center

"As residents of this barangay, we also have the right to be heard," the petition stressed.

Balanoy forwarded the petition to the local council as well as the office of Mayor Edna Tabanda.

"May we also hasten to add that prior to the transfer of truck parking, trading and packing of vegetables from Km5 to the Farmers Commodities and SME Center, the Sangguniang Barangay of Puguis and our constituents were not properly informed and that there was no public consultation conducted; Therefore, there is a prevailing culture shock and restlessness in the community," Balanoy ended.

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on January 21, 2014.

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