ILOILO CITY : Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Chairman Francis Tolentino is strongly endorsing the redevelopment and revitalization of Iloilo City’s central market by the private sector as is being done in MMDA cities like Manila and Quezon City.
Tolentino, here as guest speaker in the opening rites of the National Youth Council conference, said the private sector was willing to help local government units.
SM Investments has offered a bid to revitalize the city’s central public market with a specific contract for the city government to remain as owner of the market so as not displace more than 1,000 vendors and stall owners.
Tolentino said that whether through a joint venture or public private partnership, the public market as main hub of the people must be rehabilitated and revitalized to become an important showcase of the community.
On the other hand, a concerned group of central market vendors has joined a petition of public support for the market revitalization amidst opposition by some anti-revitalization groups at the market.
Lawyers Edeljulio Romero and Gualberto Cataluna acted as the group spokesmen to call for support to the current move of the city government to redevelop and revitalize the central market located in downtown’s central business district.
Romero said the crusade for support of the market revitalization was urging the city government to proceed immediately with the project so the city can have a beautiful and clean public market. The lawyer said they are presenting the petition of support to city mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog soon.
The central market is dilapidated with roof leaks, a garbage standoff, very poor drainage and dirty toilets. The market committee also discovered anomalies and numerous violations in the awarding of market stalls and is presently reviewing and validating the store ownerships.