By Joey Natividad
CITY OF NAGA, Bicol Region (BicolToday.com) – To re-bid again the Cavite-Laguna Expressway (CALAX) project as ordered by Malacanang to accommodate President Aquino’s uncle, Danding Cojuangco, in another attempt to wrest control over the project, has caused uproar among the Makabayan bloc.
Cojuangco was a losing bidder in the CALAX project, and Makabayan believed Aquino has intervened for CALAX’s rebidding to open the way for his uncle.
Kabataan Rep. Terry Ridon described the decision of the Palace to rebid the Cavite-Laguna Expressway project as an example that the President’s much-touted Daang Matuwid as nothing, but a sham.
“The intervention of Mr Aquino in the CALAX controversy to come to the aid of San Miguel Corporation, his uncle Danding’s company, clearly shows that the President will go to great lengths to defend his KKK.”
Ridon observed that Mr Aquino never lifted a finger to intervene in other controversial PPP projects with similar bids disadvantageous to the government, such as the MRT ticketing system, the LRT1 extension project, the MRT-LRT common station, and the Mactan Cebu Airport expansion.
“But now that his uncle’s company lost the bid, heaven and earth are now being moved to call for a rebidding of the project.”
Ridon said the order for a rebidding is clearly out of the ordinary, especially since the Aquino government has been trying to put up a ‘front of legal fairness and integrity’ in the conduct of big-ticket projects.
“Instead of rebidding the project, it would also be best if government reassesses whether the CALAX is really needed by the public at this time.”
Ridon said that the expressway will displace thousands of farming communities affected by the project.
“The social impact of the project has not yet been fully determined, especially in light of the inadequacies of the current agrarian reform program.” [BicolToday.com]