ILOILO – Traveling from Iloilo to Guimaras will no longer entail a perilous boat ride that can even lead to tragedy once inter-island bridge connecting the islands of Panay and Guimaras is completed, Sen. Miguel Zubiri said.
“Ang mga lansa nga ginasakyan sang mga tawo from Iloilo City to Guimaras province damo-damo gid nagakalamatay tungod nga wala sang klaro nga transports system but when there’s a bridge those people who died, those people who lost their lives this year will not loss anymore lives in the future,” said Zubiri.
The Negrense lawmaker described the successive capsizing of three motorboats on Aug. 3 as enough reason to push the project. Zubiri added that the lack of a bridge connecting the island of Guimaras has endangered the lives of residents since boat trips are at the mercy of the weather.
Zubiri was in Iloilo City on Friday for meeting with the mayors in the province.
He told reporters that this major (bridge) project can be started by 2021 after Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Secretary Mark Villar vowed his assurance.
“I believe ang Iloilo-Guimaras may budget na and I think ready na for first phase. So, daw ang siling ni Mark (Villar) groundbreaking will be 2021 basta ma-groundbreaker na okey na na. That is on-going project,” dugang ni Zubiri.
Zubiri together with Ilonggo Sen. Franklin Drilon is one of the senators to press for the bridge’s prompt construction following the tragedy
The lawmaker hopes the inter-island bridge that would pass through Panay, Guimaras, and Negros will materialize as it will provide a road network from one island to another in the region.
“Ginhambalan ko nga padayunon na sia didto sa Negros because it makes more sense because gamay man lang Guimaras. So, the enterprises and goods from Iloilo and Guimaras ma-deliver na didto,” said Zubiri.
Zubiri also disclosed his dream project, the one Visayas bridge program, that according to him he started campaigning from 2007 to 2013.
This bridge will link Iloilo to Guimaras to Bacolod to Dumaguete to Cebu and Bohol.
Zubiri said this project will pave a way for safer and faster sea transportation in the Visayas region./PN