The P300 million Alburquerque Cluster Sanitary Landfill (ACSLF), dogged by dithering, costly time overruns, allegations of substandard construction and relationships gone sour is finally getting into its final stretch after the completion of a test performance of all its equipment.
The test run was reported “very successful” by Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA) ACSLF Project Manager Engr. Joselito Aure
TIEZA officials, Lourel Construction and the Chronicle witnessed the test run on Thursday, August 18, 2016 but the LGU of Alburquerque was not present since they were not informed about the test run, according to the Office of the Mayor.
During the test run, the time lapse from the arrival, weighing, dumping of the garbage and the re-weighing of the garbage truck was measured at 10 minutes.
But the Office of the Mayor was not informed of the test run results when asked to comment by the Chronicle while former Mayor Tungol answered “no comment”.
Expressing serious concern over the integrity and quality of the ACSLF, the LGU of Alburquerque maintains thatÂ the project be properly implemented in accordance with the approved specifications and standards otherwise our constituents will suffer the consequences it might bring to us and even worse to the next generation”.
“The acceptance of the project will largely depend on our assessment with the assistance of the Commission on Audit and other competent agencies”, the Office of the Mayor told the Chronicle.
A scheduled crucial five day dry run on September 5, 2016 which will involve the actual delivery of garbage by municipalities included in the ACSLF will determine the readiness of the total operation of the landfill.
Contrary to reports that the ACSLF has been turned over to TIEZA by the contractor, Aure clarified that the landfill project has not been accepted but will be handed over to Alburquerque pending results of the dry run on September 5, 2016.
Aure told the Chronicle that the test run was performed by TIEZA and Lourel Construction despite the certification of “good working condition” by the Bureau of Working Conditions of the Department of Labor and Employment because of the length of time the equipment were left at the mercy of the weather conditions.
The landfill equipment which was certified as “in good working condition” by the DOLE was again put through one more test run were two dump trucks, vibratory compactor, weighing scales and instruments and a weighing bridge.
On April 25, 2016, former Alburquerque Mayor Efren Tungol signed the partial turn-over of the four units of heavy equipment from Atty. Guiller Asido, Chief Operating Officer in behalf of TIEZA.
However, the heavy equipment were “conditionally accepted” pending correction of deficiencies noted in the inspection report of the LGU Monitoring Team.
Tungol expressed concern on the quality of the hydraulic excavator, vibratory compactor, two Izuzu ten wheeler dump truck with models 1992 and 1990 respectively.
Newly elected Alburquerque Mayor Elpren Charles Tungol wrote Atty. Guiller Asido, TIEZA Acting Chief Operating Officer on July 8, 2016 requesting for the “possible immediate variation in the design and relocation of the weighbridge at the entrance to the landfill site and change its design considering its elevation”.
But Aure disclosed to the Chronicle that the proximity of the weighbridge and the administrative building where the weighing instruments are set up is very crucial since there should be visual contact between the operator of the garbage truck and personnel manning the weighing instruments to ensure accurate gathering of data.
When reminded by the Chronicle on the status of the 16 point concern raised by the Alburquerque Monitoriing Team over several lapses on the construction of the landfill, Aure said “we are going to address these concerns and assure the LGU that the landfill will comply with the plans and specifications of the project”.
Among the concerns raised by the monitoring team were the provisions on the geo-synthetic liner and flooring for the fishpondÂ which the LGU requires but TIEZA finds unnecessary.
The depth of the monitoring wells should be at least 90 meters underground, the number of ground monitoring wells and theÂ collapse of the retaining wall due to heavy rains and the quality of the soil that accommodated the structure,
A clash of widely differing accomplishment reports on the ongoing construction of the ACSLF has added to the growing uncertainty over the completionÂ of Phase lll of the project scheduled to be finished on April 12, 2015.
The Â ACSLF located in Barangay Dangay, Alburquerque was scheduled to be completed on April 12, 2015 but TIEZA and Alburquerque are still at loggerheads over the integrity and quality of the project.
Phase lll was started on September 15, 2014 and was contracted to Lourel Development Corporation for P55.8 million to be completed in 210 days.
“In factÂ we Â are still awaiting the formal turn over of phase ll of the landfill project which was reportedly completed on January 22, 2014”, former Mayor Tungol said.
The lifespan of the ACSLF was reduced to 25 years from 50 years after Tagbilaran City opted to be part of the cluster landfill with an estimated more than 30 tons of garbage produced daily.
With the Environmental Ombudsman running after Local Government Units (LGU’s) operating open dump sites for lack of garbage disposal sites, a violation of RA 9003 known as the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000, the much anticipated completion of the ACSLF will bring relief to the 17 municipalities faced with Â mounting garbage problems.Â (Chito M. Visarra)Â Â