Angara invites Osmeña to check out Aurora economic zone


Senator Edgardo Angara. INQUIRER file photo

Senator Edgardo Angara. INQUIRER file photo

MANILA, Philippines—Senator Edgardo Angara has invited his fellow senator Sergio Osmeña III to visit Casiguran, Aurora, and see for himself whether his allegations against the Aurora Pacific Economic Zone (Apeco) are correct.

“I would like to invite Mr. Vicious to come and visit Aurora so he doesn’t make these wild allegations,” Angara said.

“When we inaugurate the airstrip next year, we will give (Osmeña) a free pass. And we’ll even charter a small plane for him, perhaps a Cessna from Cebu to Baler,” Angara added sarcastically.

Osmeña earlier threatened to block Apeco’s P353-million budget for 2013 after noting that the freeport zone had not attracted investors given its distance and lack of electricity.

Osmeña also brought to a news conference resource persons who alleged that Apeco had been forcing them to sell their lands for its expansion and that Angara and his relatives had been the ones behind Apeco.

On Wednesday night, however, Osmeña’s staff said he would move instead to reduce Apeco’s allocation next year to only P10 million.

“I cannot understand why Senator Osmeña is so malicious and vicious towards the development of Aurora. Why doesn’t he pay attention to Cebu?” Angara said on Wednesday of his Cebuano colleague.

Angara denied allegations that people have been driven from their homes so Apeco could use the land for its expansion.

“There is housing for 496 people who sold their property to Apeco because of the (construction of the) airport and the corporate campus,” he noted.

“In other ecozones, the locators build housing units for their employees. But in the case of Apeco, we built … resettlement houses for owners who sold their property to Apeco.  In other words, they already got back their money’s worth, yet we give them a brand-new house plus guaranteed employment,” the senator added.

Angara also said that in January, “at least 500 people” affected by Apeco’s development would be provided jobs.

“There are jobs for the Dumagat (indigenous peoples) and the place is booming. I would suggest that Serge Osmeña, who is very fond of lecturing from the chair, goes there and we will invite him so he will see the actual developments … so he’ll stop saying that Apeco is for the Angaras,” the senator said.

Osmeña and resource persons he invited to a news conference at the Senate Tuesday alleged that Angara and his close relatives have been the only ones using the airstrip inside Apeco for chartered flights.

Osmeña said he learned that Apeco had invited potential investors to the site that he believed would not be commercially viable given its distance from Manila and the factories in Central Luzon.

According to Osmeña, the fact that Casiguran is located along the path of typhoons that hit the Philippines would also discourage investment in the area.

Angara has countered that Apeco could only accommodate chartered flights at this point since there are no commercial flights to Casiguran yet.

When asked if the Apeco would be commercially viable, the senator answered, “Of course.”

“It will make money and is probably the best located zone of all because it is in an area that is undeveloped and is opening up development towards that area,” Angara said.

“With Apeco opening, we are in effect unlocking the potential of almost one million hectares of land and sea. As you can see, there is not a seaport or airport in the Pacific as modern as this one and therefore we will provide the gateway to the Pacific and we will open up an alternate route for the people of Cagayan Valley,” he added.

Angara asked Osmeña to read up on his geography, noting that a check with the weather bureau showed that in the past five years, 16 disturbances directly passed Metro Manila while only six passed Aurora.

“Aurora is always mentioned when there is a disturbance coming from the Pacific because the central weather forecasting of Pagasa is located in Baler and naturally when there is a disturbance, the (area) is used as reference point. That kind of ignorance that Osmeña is saying should already stop,” Angara said.

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  • elizabeth

    It is strange that Angara is doing all the talking for all his quietude in many vital issues confronting the country. Why don’t you guys in Congress conduct a formal hearing and invite technical or scientific personalities there or elsewhere, to attest to the viability of this project requiring tons of public funds. I believe Serg is right and that the Angaras really don’t care about anything but their political hold on a province to perpetuate their dynasty. It is a circus: one Angara after another starting a political name in Baler then jumping on to national positions to rake more and more. The elder Angara should stop fooling the people and retire for good. Mayaman ka na hindi ba?

    • CheapJ

      This is what is wrong with our politicians – insatiable appetite for power and money. Definitely, I will not vote for his son.

  • John_Galt_II

    Kahit na ano ang pinag aralan kung magnanakaw talaga hindi na magbabago!

  • Vic

    The point of Sen Osmena is that unless Baler is linked to Manila with a superhighway or a rail system, it will remain an isolated zone. Perhaps, Sen Angara should have focused first on the building the links before tackling the APECO.

    • dkgboy

       I do not support the project but let me say that they are building a link from NLEX and SCTEX in Tarlac an expressway to Aurora via Cabanatuan City and San Jose City in Nueva Ecija. Somebody posted the other day that ‘ they were good ideas with bad intentions’.I guessed he meant using a needed project for their own hidden interest. And then there is the feasibility undertaking on constructing a coastal highway from Marikina to Baler via the borders of Bulacan,Umiray and Dingalan in Aurora.You may have to ask Architect J.Palafox on this one.

  • repapips

    pareho lang naman political clans yan. funny how osmena got his facts and angara has his facts. get it through investigation rather than media trashtalks. parang may motive etong si osmena or nagagamit.

    i’ve been hearing good things happening in aurora since the angara’s took over the local politics. wag naman sanang masira dahil sa patutsadahan na ito ngaung eleksyon. gentlemen, prove yourselves (your facts).

    • Al Calde

      and how long were the angara’s in public service?

      since time immemorial!

  • simondj

    ang tanong po,,, sino pong investor ang magtatayo ng negosyo diyan. dito po kasi sa SUBIC at CLARK kompleto na (kalsada, building, perimeter fence, guardhouse, power grid, etc. etc.) eh hirap pang kombensihin mga investor.,, wala pong kasiguiruhan na ang mga investor ay mag nenegosyo sa Casiguran.

  • nice_boy

    To attract investors, the government have to build infrastructure first.  Only then will investors come in.  Developing Aurora Province is one way of de-congesting Metro Manila.  The citizens of Aurora should be given a chance.

  • im_earth

    why P353-million? too costly.

    if he can tour to LAOAG AIRPORT or KALIBO AIRPORT which have more tourist – it cannot go up with that amount!

    nice Osmena!

  • kismaytami

    Harapin na lang ni angara yung mga nagrereklamong landowners. I believe they’re coming in Manila after a long walk from Aurora.

    A chartered Cessna from Cebu. I remember Sec. Robredo.

  • Chloe

    Honga naman. Bakit hindi nalang muna icheckout ni Osmena bago niya sabihing walang progress? TO naman kasi si Serge banat ng banat e. 

  • Shedgumboy

    Siice the PHIL Gov. have so much money… time to build more infrastructure project.. Road and
    bridges along the Eastern Seaboard of Luzon Island. from Casiguran thru Mauban . That will
    help decongest   Metro Manila  which become so crowded with   so many building.

    As years go by  growth in this part of  Eastern  Luzon will thrive and more people will
    move as the region become industrialize. 

  • Tortillos

    Ayan makakalibre pa ng pamasahe si Serge papuntang Aurora tuloy. Dapat din siguro bigyan ng change si Angara na ma prove ito kay Serge. At ayun nga, nadeny tuloy yung budget cut niya.

  • Guest

    Actually, in favor ako sa pagdevelop nila ng tulad ng Apeco sa ibang lugar… Daoat mabgiyan din ng opportunity na magkaroon ng progress sa ibang lugar. Aurora is rich in resources and maganda if magamit din natin yun para makadagdag tulong s economy natin…

  • OhDelilah

    Feeling ko lang na tsismis lang yung pinagbasihan ni Senator Osmena. Mas malaki a yung inexpect ko sa kanya dun, sana man lang may solid siya na evidence man lang. Yan tuloy napahiya lang siya s senate at mas malaki yung vote ng di nagaagree sa kanya,

  • The Truth

    If there is one area in the Pacific that should be develop first, it should be the Real, Infanta and Polillo Island Quezon area. The Marcos Highway route should be upgraded to high-grade/high-speed or better yet, build a toll-highway similar to NLEX to Metro Manila.

    First development should be a world-class seaport, if possible, is it? I just can’t imagine why this area was not developed in past generations. All the goods coming from the Pacific need to unload  at Manila Bay, whereas, a seaport in the Eastern side and a high-speed rail/road system is the most ideal.

    • Simon Jaring

      centro po ng commerce ang manila kay diyan pa rin ang bagsak ng mga goods galling ibang bansa, alangan naman ibabagsak sa Casiguran tapos dadalhin sa Manila, Malabo po iyon.

  • Shedgumboy

    That’s exactly correct.. the Real-Infanta – Marikina Road  should be develop and upgraded,
    similar to NLEX or US Freeway where travelers can easily access  and reach their destination
    especially people  going to Polillo Islands.. and   a road from Casiguran to Atimonan Quezon will
    enhance the development of the Eastern part of Luzon.. 

  • vir_a

    Angara had always been a winner since Marcos time. He is a friend to all past presidents.

  • ArmchairGeek

    So, how is Osmena related to Sid Vicious?

  • jerjerjer

    Ayan na Osmena papakita na sayo kung gano ka BS yang mga sinasabi mo. Puro ka kontra wala ka naman palang alam.

  • Simon Jaring

    tama,,, upang Makita gaano kalalaki ang mga alon.

  • CarlalraC

    Pag naguntugan na yang dalawang yan diyan na magkakalaman.. Osmena you wasted a lot of time and generated too much unnecessary hate.. clearly you did not know what you were doing.. pretty bold yet stupid move for you…

  • daviddiana4L

    This is interesting. Osmena will definitely be proven wrong. I have a couple of friends who have done research in the area and all of Osmena’s accusations are wrong, that’s I was never for the anti APECO thing. It’s just BS.

  • Jack

    inggit lang yan kasi ang aurora ay nabigyan ng P1B development fund ni pnoy si angara ng panahon ng corona impeachment trial

  • tonto_ka

    ANGARA you are VERY IGNORANT of weather forecasting. Weather disturbance is not reckoned from the central forecasting station but where the disturbance is located and its possible path…ULYANIN…

  • Maldi2

    What is there to show if he is bragging to show to Osmena and the people?  Check their website at makikita mo puro drawing lang.  I’ve not heard so far of any commercial activities, maliban siguro sa mga carenderia ng mga construction workers. Tiba tiba nga talaga si senatong Agnas-a dito sa EcoZone Proect na ito! bwehehehehe

  • enzoignatius

    Okay ‘to na ipapakita niya kay Serge ang mga di nakikita ni Serge. Matapang siya ipakita dahil meron siyang mapapakita. Marami sa article na ito na pinapalabas kung gano ka okay para sa Aurora at sa ating bansa na din, ang project na ito. 

  • Guest

    You’ll be in for a ride Serge! Makikita mo kung gaano kakitid ang utak mo! Tama na haka haka magkaalaman na!

  • Erarara

    Ito na ang inaabangan ko!! Osmena you’ll see how wrong your accusations are and we can finally put this issue to rest..

    • Sirena101

      Mukha ngang di real yung sinasabi niya e.Parang nagaaccuse ka ng isang tao based sa mga naririnigrinig lang.

      • sigelangbro

        True. Para makarest na din yung mga 120 people na naglalakad now papunta sa Manila. I hope they;re okay. Medyo may kalamigan na at baka silay magkasakit lang along the way. I think someone should pick them up and bring them here.

    • joegaga

      yan cguro reason bakit 7-4 yung score nung botohan nila dat day. hehehe. laf3p lang talaga si Osmena e. Dapat sumama na siya para libreng vacation sa Aurora

  • Daniel

    Sayang lang ang effort ni Mister O dito. Nagpagod lang cya at nagsayang ng oras. Sa palagay ko naiinggit kag yun at gusto din pumondo para sa lugar niya

  • Damon

    So Angara challenged Osmena pala ha :) Well mukhang confident naman pala yung side nila. Nga pala na deny na din yung request ng budget cut so, mukhang mali siya.

    • sigelangbro

      Yes he did. I dont know what his reply was but I dont think they have a good proof to back them to prove that the ecozone is not doing anything. baka mapahiya pa sila actually

    • shotgunjames

      wala lang magawa si osmenakaya nagiingay yan.

  • simondj

    kung pupunta si Osmena diyan galing Pasay, hindi pa maubos ang isang tasang kape lalapag na siya, kung matapos man ang airport diyan. waste of tax payers money. at saka sino naman ang ofw na pupunta pa diyan para sumakay ng eroplano papuntang abroad?  

  • sigelangbro

    For me lang, maganda yung mga ports nayan all over our country.See, lately, tumaas yung econ natin to 7.1%. If mas madami pang ports, Im sure that’ll help boosting our gains and at the same time give the people stable jobs.

  • joegaga

    “I would like to invite Mr. Vicious to come and visit Aurora so he doesn’t make these wild allegations,”
    — haha, laf3p ‘to! :p 

    Moral of the story: wag magbitiw ng salita kung di ka sigurado . Hehhee. Peace! 

    • shotgunjames

      babaw naman ng kaligayahan neto

  • shotgunjames

    > so, ginamit na si O yung card niyang madalas tamaan ng typhoon yung lugar na yun 

    > medyo lame yata yun.  haha

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