The Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) will preserve the lone tree park in Baguio City, President and General Manager Jesus Clint Aranas said Sunday.
“We will neither sell the land where the park stands nor allow it to be converted into a commercial area by any party,” he said.
Aranas gave the assurance in response to the sentiments of a Grade 6 student at the Baguio Pines Family Learning Center to save the Tree Park near the Baguio Convention Center and University of the Philippines after rumors came out that a condotel or carpark building will be constructed there.
“We empathize with Alcina Flores and other students concerned. They can heave a sigh of relief because the GSIS property will remain to be the home of these beautiful trees,“ Aranas said.
“We all share the same concern for the environment. If we are responsible stewards of God’s gifts, then we will surely reap the rewards such as having cool, clean, and fresh air,” he added.
“In fact, GSIS employees helped plant trees in the park, too.”
Aranas is optimistic that the negotiations with the City Government of Baguio to purchase the lot on which the park sits will finally come to a fruitful resolution.
Baguio City Mayor Mauricio Domogan earlier offered to buy the lot so it can definitively preserve the park.
“I hope that the good Mayor would understand that the value of a property appreciates over time. In any decision, investment or otherwise, we have to ensure that this will help grow our funds to benefit our members and pensioners” explained the pension fund chief.
Caring for the environment is one of GSIS’s corporate social responsibility programs. Every year, GSIS holds tree-planting activities as part of the National Greening Program.
In particular, GSIS has adopted a 50-hectare planting site at Barangay Balagbag, San Jose Del Monte City, Bulacan, where 25,360 fruit-bearing saplings have been planted.