Flooded streets: corruption at work - Weekend

Flooded streets: corruption at work

Jerome NeriAtty. Jerome G. Neri
The Scrutineer

WAIST-DEEP water. That was the scene at A.S. Fortuna St. last Thursday just after lunch hours. Just before summer began, part of A.S. Fortuna was demolished for re-paving and the sides dug up for drainage repair. It only took a couple of days to demolish the roads and a couple of weeks to dig the sides of the road so that they can install culverts to solve the flooding problem in that street.

Six months later and well in to the rainy season, the A.S. Fortuna repairs are still very far from completion. I barely see anyone working on it during the day and night. This road and drainage repair remains unfinished because it is in the interest of the government and the contractor not to finish the road at the onset of the rainy season.

Here’s why: their drainage project is doomed to fail because the design is to drain the water of A.S Fortuna to the Subangdaku River, a river which actually is now just a canal and should be renamed to Subanggamay.

This “river” is so congested that it also overflows at the slightest rain. It even overflows when it rains in the mountains areas even without any rain in the city. Yes, it is that bad. The overflowing of this “river” is also the reason why the SM area goes underwater during rains, as that is the area where the exit of the “river” is located. Then of course it is not possible to drain the water of A.S. Fortuna to that “river” as it is already beyond its capacity.

Parked cars in a flooded area in Metro Cebu
Parked cars in a flooded area in Metro Cebu

Therefore, if the government finished this project right before the onset of the rainy season, it will be clear to the public that this project is a total failure. Slowing down this project and finishing it after the rainy season will not show its flaws simply because there is no water to drain. And when the rainy season comes back, government can blame the public for flooding by accusing the public of clogging up the drainage by throwing garbage in it. This is corruption at work.

PLATE NUMBERS. I saw this funny post on social media that showed pics of the plate numbers issued of past administrations, it was hilarious but true. During Ramos’ time the plates had “Pilipinas 2000,” Erap’s time, “Perlas ng Silanganan,” Gloria’s time, “Matatag na Republica,” and now on Pnoy’s administration it is “No Plates Available.”

SUBARU PALM CHALLENGE. The Subaru Palm Challenge is back in Cebu. This will be held at the Terraces, Ayala Center, Cebu, tomorrow. This is a contest of endurance. The participants place their palm on a Subaru vehicle for as long as they possibly can and the last participant left with his palm on the vehicle is the winner.

Since this is a qualifying round for the finals that will be held in Singapore, there are different challenges that is designed to make a participant release the vehicle, like making them stand on one leg while keeping their palms on the car.

It is not as easy as it looks. I’ve had friends who did not even last an hour in last year’s palm challenge, and the winner did something like nine hours. At stake is a spot in the final round of the Subaru Palm Challenge in Singapore, including the airfare, accommodation, expenses and some pocket money.

MAZDA MIATA. The 2016 Mazda Miata was unveiled last week. The world’s most successful roadster has kept its DNA, which is simple, lightweight, fun-to-drive and affordable. The Miata has such a huge enthusiast base that the new Miata had to be designed to appeal to the current enthusiasts and at the same time capture the hearts and minds of potential new enthusiasts.

Judging by the looks of it, I think Mazda has done it. When the Miata first came out in the late 80s, it was one of the most fun-to-drive cars with amazing handling, but the engine was slow. Improvements have been made through the years, but to me, it is still not powerful enough.

However, I have tested the Skyactive technology engine of the Mazda CX-5 and found it to be an awesome engine, incorporating Skyactive technology to this new Miata should give it the grunt that I am looking for in a car. The Miata lost its crown as the most fun-to-drive car when the Toyota 86/ Subaru BRZ came out. With this all-new Miata they want to regain that crown.

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