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Win-win solution?

Ben Contreras

“I am being crucified in local and social media,” says Barangay 33 chairman Conrad Lim.

In the presence of his engineer, Lim said the reclamation started in 2008. It happened after 1997. So, why was it not cleared during the clearing operation?

Surely, Lim is not untouchable. But if he was able to finish his project, then Lim must have the legal documents to support his act. And he claims he has aces.

I remember some six years ago when I was invited by then congressman Rufus Rodriguez in his stints on this project. When I wrote about it, Lim asked me to beg Rodriguez not to touch his place since rerouting is not something odd as far as DPWH history is concerned. To cut his property in halves will defeat the purpose for which Lim applied for it. I never had the opportunity to tell the congressman that.

Yes, there were complaints even from some government agencies, the PRA in particular that issued a cease-and-desist order. After, the issue was resolved. How? That’s Lim hidden aces in case there would be a case filed against him.

Like I said earlier, it is easier to convince with gentle words than with belligerence.

“How about some win-win solution?” I asked.

“Why not just stop all these black propaganda and follow the legal process?” Lim shot back.

Yes, I did tell him about the old house in the middle of the highway in China.

In the afternoon that same day with Lim, I went to see DPWH regional director Eduarte. He was not around but Vinah Jean Maghinay, spokesperson of the DPWH in Region 10, obliged me with her time.

Maghinay, being with DPWH only in 2014, admitted that he is not quite knowledgeable on the issue. So, I told her that I suppose Eduarte, too. She nodded. Both of them are really trying to study and understand the case.

I asked who is more knowledgeable about it. He mentioned a certain Engr. Pecore. Since nothing is coming out of the meeting, I requested her to set another interview with the Eduarte and Engr. Pecore. Next Wednesday would be it.

In parting, I told her to inform Eduarte that there is room for a win-win-solution, and that Lim is not averse to it.

I took note of the fact that seeing a DPWH regional director is no longer difficult compared to his predecessor. She is said to be allergic to mediamen and interviews. Perhaps, she didn’t want to be asked of things she doesn’t want to talk about. Ah, too many secrets, I guess.

Eduarte may be of a different breed. In fact, according to Niño Contreras, the problem of Mrs. Bravo has been acted upon on orders coming from Eduarte. This, I need to find out from Mrs. Bravo.

Diplomacy is better than politics to achieve better results.


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TREND MAKER. Mindanao Gold Star Daily was established in 1989 to set ablaze a new meaning & flame to the local newspaper business. Throughout the years it continued its focus and interest in the rural areas & pioneered the growth of countryside journalism.

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