Bacolod City readies roads for ASEAN Summit meetings in March

BACOLOD CITY-- City officials here are conducting inspections of the roads to be used during the 2017 Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit meetings in Bacolod this coming March.

Mayor Evelio Leonardia said Wednesday the city government wanted to ensure roads were in good condition and free from illegal structures.

During the inspections, Leonardia was joined by Vice Mayor El Cid Familiaran, City Administrator John Orola, Department of Public Works and Highways Bacolod District Engineer Abraham Villareal, Bacolod City Police Office officer-in-charge Senior Supt. Jack Wanky, and Bacolod Traffic Authority Office head Superintendent Luisito Acebuche.

About 160 delegates are expected to attend the two summit meetings here on March 14 to 16, and March 21 to 24.

In December, the Task Group Bacolod was formed to carry out preparations for the city's hosting of the two ASEAN Summit meetings.

Task Group Bacolod is composed of 21 national government agencies, including, among others, the Philippine National Police, Department of Interior and Local Government, Department of Tourism, Department of Health, and Bureau of Fire Protection.

Chief Supt. Renato Gumban, director of Police Regional Office-18 in Negros Island Region, serves as the task group commander.

Marciano Paynor Jr., director-general for operations of the ASEAN 2017 National Organizing Council (NOC), said the summit meetings that will be convened by various lead government agencies will be attended by high-level delegates such as senior officials.

"Bacolod City has a critical role in this national hosting," Paynor added.

Leonardia, in response, said: "We are thrilled and honored to host this very significant event especially in the light of the ASEAN integration program which can affect our daily lives."

"We can no longer think of ourselves as simply a Philippine city, we must now think of Bacolod as a city of Southeast Asia and align our goals with this," he further said.

The Philippines' summit hosting this year coincides with the 50th anniversary of ASEAN.

Founded in 1967, the ASEAN is composed of member-states Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Brunei Darussalam, Vietnam, Cambodia, Lao PDR and Myanmar.(PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency

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