Paquibato District, Davao City – The GMA Kapuso Foundation Inc, in collaboration with the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Philippine National Police and the City Government of Davao conducted the Inaugural Ceremony of the newly constructed KAPUSO-MAPULA HANGING STEEL BRIDGE sponsored by MX3, Royal Mandaya Hotel, Cemex Cement, PPG Paints, Equator Energy Solar Lamps on December 10, 2019 at Brgy Mapula, Paquibato District, Davao City.
Gracing the event as guests of honour were GMA Kapuso Foundation Ambassador, Founder and 24 Oras News Anchor Ms. Mel Tiangco together with the Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer Ms. Rikki Escudero-Catibog, Focal Person of Peace 911 Mr. Roger S. Baay representing Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, and Chief of Staff, Armed Forces of the Philippines, GEN NOEL S CLEMENT, AFP. Around five hundred (500) residents were also present during the event.
The District of Paquibato, a newly-declared ‘Peace Zone’ in Davao City, is now on the road to progress and a home to the Ata indigenous group, who for many years have struggled to transport their goods due to lack of paved roads and bridges in the locality. Locals, especially students, have been facing the danger of crossing the river almost daily in order to travel from their homes to their schools.
This project features the 50-meter cable-suspended steel bridge with a concrete bridge tower. It is designed to be 1.8 meters wide to accommodate habal-habal motorcycles, allowing a faster and more convenient way to transport Paquibato’s local products. Other than transportation, the project aims to promote safety for residents, improve access to food, healthcare, education, trade opportunities, and even open up Paquibato as a tourist destination.
Mr Roger S Baay, Focal Person, Davao City Peace 911, delivered the message of Hon. Sara Z. Duterte, City Mayor, Davao City, “Let this 50 meter cable suspended steel hanging bridge with concrete towers symbolically bridge economic gaps and the community to allow safe and easy passage across the river for travelling to school and the community. Transport of goods, access to medical facilities and other significant activities. It is also my hope that this is just the beginning of a series of initiatives to benefit not only Brgy Mapula but also the neighboring communities dahil ang kaunlaran ng isang komunidad, kaunlaran din ng ating buong bayan.”
Gen Clement, in his message, “We are truly honored to be part of this very successful project, since then that we have been partnering in the conduct of worthwhile endeavors that aim to benefit and deliver services to our fellow Filipinos while also setting our sites on a folding peace and security in our country. In the long years that we have been partnering in different worthwhile endeavors, we have provided necessary logistics, expertise and manpower support that is needed to fulfill our mission here in Brgy Mapula particularly in completing this 50 meter steel hanging bridge.”
Ms. Mel Tiangco, on her message said, “Kami ay nagpakita ng pagmamahal at kapag nagpakita ng pagmamahal pinakamagandang panukli ay pagmamahal… Let it be a concrete manifestation of how a project will become successful kung napagtutulungan ng lahat ng sektor.”
The activity was highlighted with the Ribbon Cutting headed by Ms. Mel Tiangco and Ms. Rikki Escudero-Catibog of GMA Kapuso Foundation together with Armed Forces of the Philippines headed by GEN NOEL S CLEMENT, AFP and different sponsors of the said project. It was then followed by the Ata ritual called Panubad-tubad with Datu Antonio Ensaan IPMR of Brgy Mapula and a Blessing officiated by LTC MELCHOR P TORAYNO (CHS) PA, 10ID’s Division Chaplain. Other activities conducted were tree planting along Mapula Bridge and gift giving to the students of Mapula Elementary School.