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Marcos couple vows to ‘relentlessly pursue’ Pasig River restoration project

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President Marcos vowed to personally supervise the Pasig River rehabilitation program, along with his wife First Lady Liza Araneta-Marcos, citing the redevelopment project and the river’s survival as their family’s own goal.

During his speech at the ceremonial opening of the “Pasig Bigyang Buhay Muli:” Pasig River Urban Development Showcase on Wednesday, Jan. 17, the President said he would monitor the progress of this project.

Mr. Marcos declared that this is not just a passing campaign or a fleeting trend. “This will be pursued relentlessly. So, what sets this apart? You and your president, along with the real lead proponent, our First Lady, will focus on it,” he stressed.

The President stated that the “Pasig Bigyan Buhay Muli” project aims to turn the tidal estuary into a vibrant watercourse with numerous advantages for the public. 

His vision includes the establishment of safe walkways and bikeways along the riverbanks, a greener corridor, and a series of parks for nearby communities.

The chief executive also said part of the plan is to optimize the deployment of ferry boats and establish additional stations, aiming to encourage more commuters to utilize the maritime transportation system.

Simultaneously advocating for the Pasig River’s revitalization, the President clarified that the initiative will not be superficial. He emphasized a thorough cleanup extending to the river’s bed.

He instructed the local government units (LGUs) along Pasig River, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA), and the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) to submit quarterly and annual reports.

Further, the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) has been tasked with providing updates on the Pasig River rehabilitation project.

The President said he expects quarterly and yearly reports to be submitted by these government agencies because he wants to see a “prototype” of the Pasig River redevelopment “produced in sustainable speed and in sustainable focus up to its final and logical conclusion.”

The President disclosed that his advisers cautioned him against tying the fate of the Pasig River to his political future. They discouraged him from presenting it as a symbol of the “Bagong Pilipinas” initiative, as failure could pose a risky indicator.

“But I will not be deterred from placing a bet on this endeavor because the presidency is about attaining the grand, and not wasting mandates on the petty,” Mr. Marcos said. “Do not expect any half-hearted commitments. Not from this president. In everything I do, I am all fully in,” he underscored.

Mr. Marcos also stated that the First Lady has been their family’s “in-house advocate” for the Pasig River restoration project, calling her a “passionate champion” of its survival, “who has been quietly doing the spadework.”

Concluding his address, the President emphasized that the rehabilitation of the Pasig River is not solely for the benefit of the administration, but is dedicated to the well-being of the next generation.


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