The Department of Public Works and Highways Bacolod District Office has been directed by DPWH Manila to remove all illegal structures along the national roads including those in Bacolod City.
Acting Bacolod District Enginer Josefino Melgar Jr. said in his letter to Mayor Evelio Leonardia dated Dec. 1, 2010 that they are implementing “operation baklas” where they will remove various illegal structures within the national roads in Bacolod City.
He cited Section 23 of Presidential Decree No. 17 which provides that it will be unlawful for any person to usurp any portion of a road-right-of-way, to convert any part of any public highway, bridge, wharf or trail to his own private use or to obstruct the same in any manner.
Melgar also cited Section 3 of City Ordinance 53, series of 1998, or an ordinance declaring edifices and all other structures built on public roads and sidewalks as nuisance per se.
Earlier, Vice Mayor Jude Thaddeus Sayson had said he will ask the highway engineer of DPWH Bacolod City to explain why they removed the traffic signages along the streets of the city.
Sayson said he was informed that the DPWH had received an order from the national office to clear the national roads of obstructions.
But he said, “I believe that the order to clear national roads of obstructions does not include traffic signages but refers to illegal structures like stores or shanties”.
Sayson said he will ask the DPWH engineer for an explanation because he does not think the signages are the obstructions referred to in the letter of the DPWH Secretary.*CGS