Senator Franklin Drilon may have been on cloud nine since the approval of his dam proposal worth ₱11.3 billion, but the league of civil engineers are not convinced.
Drilon said that legal impediments to Jalaur River Multipurpose Project (JRMP) II had been removed after Quezon City Regional Trial Court (RTC) upheld the bidding conducted by the National Irrigation Administration.
“We are confident that in the first quarter of next year, we can finally commence the construction of this biggest dam outside of Luzon,” Drilon said.
He said the government was awaiting the final concurrence of the Economic Development Cooperation Fund of the South Korean government before the start of construction.
The megadam, a priority infrastructure project of the administration of former President Benigno Aquino III, is funded by a $203-million loan from South Korea.
The government provided a counterpart fund amounting to P2.2 billion.
The project however may face another uncertainty after the Western Visayas Federation of Civil Engineers (WEVIFECE) filed a petition to the office of Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Secretary Mark Villar.
The letter, which was signed by the group’s 12-member board of directors, said that the allotted amount for the dam project is two times overpriced than its normal price.
Another complaint of the group was that, no invitation to bid has been given to any member of WEVIFECE. All invited bidders was outside Panay and Negros Islands.
The group is the biggest and only organization of Civil Engineers in the Western Visayas Region.
The letter also provided a detailed feasibility study and plan including the costs estimates of the megadam, which is far from the allocated ₱11.3 billion. /Joy Valle/