CEBU, Philippines – Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña has challenged Presidential Assistant for the Visayas Michael Lloyd Dino to continue with his recall initiative against him.
Osmeña issued the challenge in reaction to Dino’s criticisms against his brainchild project, the Bus Rapid Transit.
“Why don’t you proceed with your plan for a recall and I will, myself, will sign up. No problem with me. They said he’s (Dino’s) reluctant to do a recall now. Why? Ako mismo mopirma, I will recall myself. I’m not afraid to confront the people of Cebu City. I’m not trying to hang on to power,” he said.
Dino, however, was quoted in news reports that he will not support any recall election against Osmeña.
Dino’s pronouncement branding the BRT project as “anti-poor” because it cannot solve the traffic problem did not sit well with the mayor.
Dino offered the Light Rail Transit as an alternative instead of the BRT. In fact, the feasibility study to set up an LRT in Cebu has already been concluded.
But Osmeña said Dino should work first on the approval of the LRT than criticize other projects of the city. The results of the study to set up LRT has yet to get the approval of the Department of Transportation and the National Economic and Development Authority.
“The BRT is adopted all over the world. It’s only Michael Dino who said it’s anti-poor. He’s a self-proclaimed expert,” Osmeña said.
He said he knows that Dino will try to stop the implementation of the BRT project. But Osmeña said he will stop Dino from stopping the implementation of the project.
“But before he will stop (the BRT), he should get his approval first (for the LRT project) or we will end up with nothing,” Osmeña said.
On his official Facebook account, the mayor said his brainchild project is expected to become the first operational BRT in the country.
Osmeña said he believes the “best solution” to a traffic problem is having the BRT project. In 1992, he started studying the BRT concept when he went to Curitiba, Brazil. Several processes have been followed to push through with the implementation of the project.
The mayor vowed not to allow anyone from stopping the implementation of the project. (FREEMAN)