MANILA, Philippines — Environment Undersecretary Benny Antiporda on Wednesday said a flood channel for Boracay island is still underway.
Antiporda made the statement after some parts of the world-renowned island experienced waist-deep flood due to the rains brought by Tropical Storm Falcon.
The environment official said the Inter-agency task force on Boracay composed of the Departments of Environment and Natural Resources, Interior and Local Government and Tourism are building the “outfall” or the flood channel to accommodate any typhoon. He said the project is in coordination with the Department of Public Works and Highways.
Antiporda, however, said the flood channel would take time.
“It was given three years… It was supposed to be seven years. From seven years, we have shortened it to three years,” he said in mixed English and Filipino in an interview with CNN Philippines.
The DENR undersecretary apologized for the inconvenience caused by ongoing construction works.
“Kindly bear with us maayos po ‘yan,” Antiporda said.
“Rest assured kapag natapos wala na pong problema itong Boracay island (Rest assured that once it’s done, there will be no more problem in Boracay),” he added.
The island was closed in April 2018 to pave way for its rehabilitation and restoration.
The environment department said some of the rehabilitation works are still ongoing and are now halfway done.
Antiporda said the concerned agencies are working double time to finish the works while assuring that the island won’t be damaged.
Television reports said some roads in barangays Balabag and Yapak were impassable on Tuesday and early Wednesday due to the continued rains.
Frolibar Bautista, acting Malay, Aklan mayor reportedly said the flood already subsided on Wednesday afternoon. He said the flood subsided faster than the previous years. —Rosette Adel