TANZA, Cavite — President Rodrigo Roa Duterte on Thursday, November 22, inaugurated the first and only container barge port in the country – the Cavite Gateway Terminal (CGT). A collaboration between the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI), the project is expected to ease port congestion and reduce Metro Manila traffic.
During his remarks, the Chief Executive reiterated the predicaments that the public and business sectors are facing due to congestion and this initiative would alleviate those problems.
“The efficient transport of cargoes and goods to and from our ports is an important element in the supply chain industry. However, we have always been confronted by the perennial problem of port and road congestion,” President Duterte said.
“By allowing the transport of cargoes by sea instead of by land, this project is expected to result to 140,000 fewer truck trips per year. This will not just decongest our roads, but will also address the long queue of trucks in the Port of Manila,” he added.
The CGT can accommodate 115,000 twenty-foot equivalent units of containerized cargo. Once fully operational, CGT will facilitate the seaborne transport of containers from Cavite to major Luzon port facilities for faster, more cost-efficient access to the Cavite market.
“As the first and only roll-on roll-off or Ro-Ro barge terminal for international containers in the country, this terminal will promote inter-regional trade and development, provide greater access to South Luzon, and spur the growth of its thriving industries,” he cited.
“To ensure the safety of cargoes and to prevent any incident at sea, I am directing the DOTr and the Philippine Ports Authority to ensure the strict enforcement of existing rules and regulations in the operation of this facility,” he continued.
According to the ICTSI, using the waterways that are less congested, containerized cargo may now utilize Manila Bay sea lanes to facilitate the transfer of inbound and outbound freight going to and from the Cavite market.
Choosing Tanza Municipality in Cavite for the terminal is primarily strategic, considering the presence of some major economic zones within its radius of 5 to 30 kilometers of its radius such as the Cavite Export Processing Zone in nearby General Trias and First Cavite Industrial Estate in Dasmariñas. Hence, without the constraints of Metro Manila traffic, businesses in major export zones can expect faster delivery times of containerized cargoes.
“May this terminal serve as a model for other similar port infrastructure projects across the country. Together, let us work hand in hand as we lay down the physical foundations of a better life for every Filipino,” the President said.
During the event, President Duterte was accompanied by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, Transport Secretary Arthur Tugade, Cavite Governor Jesus Crispin Remulla, and ICTSI Chairman Enrique Razon Jr.
Housing official fired due to corruption allegations
Meanwhile, President Duterte announced the dismissal of Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC) Secretary-General Falconi Millar due to corruption allegations.
“Just before I left my office, I signed a dismissal order ‘yung secretary-general ng Housing. A certain Millar,” he said.
President Duterte said that, when he was still a public prosecutor and a Mayor of Davao City for 23 years, he witnessed numerous corruption that crept into the government. Since being in power triggered such illegal activity, the President believed that similar situation happened to Millar.
“You know, when you are there secretary-general, you have the power, you have the authority. You can do corruption…and it can corrupt you…give you a little…or it corrupts you absolutely,” the President said.
The Chief Executive also reiterated his warning to government officials committing graft under his administration. “For all of you, disabuse your minds about corruption in government,” he said.
He also affirmed his commitment to the Filipinos that he would vigorously address corruption in this country.
Cops warned not to enter Okada Manila
President Duterte ordered the police forces not to set foot in Okada Manila in Parañaque City, warning that he would mandate the military to patrol the area.
The President said that the resort-casino is notorious with various crimes.
“Iyong Okada diyan… I’d like to announce, lahat kayong mga pulis, umalis kayo diyan. It’s crawling with usurers…kidnappers. So, ako ang magdaan diyan… ‘pag nakita ko kayo, sagasaan ko kayo,” he said. “Better go away…lahat ng law enforcement. I do not want even a police car there.”
“Kindly… Iyang sugalan diyan, nandiyan ‘yung lahat ng…the low life of society. Mag-kidnap…diyan lang sa kwarto. Then they start to negotiate. Pagkatapos magbayad, maglabas sa kwarto…patayin pa ‘yung tao. And what are the policemen doing there? What’s your business?,” he added.
He also noted that he would call the Scout Rangers to patrol in Roxas Boulevard, where Okada Manila is located.
“If you violate my order, I will dismiss you from the service. That’s an order because you are there to commit a crime. You are not assigned there. Or I will assign the Army to patrol. Which do you want? Magbarilan kayo o sumunod kayo?,” President Duterte said.
“if I lose my patience, I’ll call the rangers… kayo ang mag-patrolya diyan. Diyan sa galing ng Fort Magsaysay. Mamili kayo. Either the military will do the patrolling there or you go out of that place there. I do not want to see any law enforcement guy there, either in uniform or in civilian clothes,” he continued.” ###PND