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Actress Tessie Tomas praises Mayor Uy, requests for presence in tourist spots

By NINFA B. QUIRANTE, (PIA Samar)
July 5, 2006

CATBALOGAN, Samar – Actress Tessie Tomas who visited Catbalogan town recently acknowledged the cleaner Catbalogan courtesy of reigning mayor Coefredo "Tekwa" Uy.

Tessie who stars in GMAs Bahay Mo Ba ‘To was in town to shoot for "Balik-bayan", a new TV program on QTV (sister channel of GMA) about a celebrity oriented travel show.

Tessie paid a courtesy call to Mayor Uy, the day she arrived in Catbalogan. Talks with the mayor’s tourism officer Kenneth Lim centered on Sunset Beach, Buri, Guinsorongan and Cal-apog. Eateries like Ratchet, Cocina de Cabral and Boulevard also were suggested. Tomas also said she wanted to find out the nightlife in her hometown. Lim was quick to suggest the Boulevard, a series of barbeque stalls in Arteche Boulevard that become alive at nighttime. They also serve dinner and drinks.

Though Tessie was enthusiastic about the cleaning of Catbalogan, Uy managed a shy smile in response to the effervescent actress’ comments on his job in Catbalogan.

Uy who considers himself media shy was unable to shy away from the media who hounded him after Tessie’s departure. The mayor then started talking.

Uy said that there are volunteers he lured into taking P140.00 a day to clean the streets twice a day. However, he expressed disappointment over some vendors who would just put their trash anywhere for reasons that there are street cleaners.

Uy has been credited for having the political will to remove sidewalk vendors in Catbalogan, shanties and mobile vendors practically littering the town’s busy thoroughfares. Uy was likewise bold enough to remove mobile vendors in the marketside giving them stalls instead to display their products. He told PIA that he himself would personally talk to the grumbling vendors about his objectives for a cleaner Catbalogan.

He also removed parked PUBs and PUJs by renting a part of PPA property and converting it into a Catbalogan Bus Terminal. Catbalogan streets have been reduced of parked public utility vehicles waiting of passengers.

As for Tessie’s comment that there are more pedicabs than people, Uy was quick to reason out that pedicab driving is the easiest means to earn a living in downtown Catbalogan. "To remove them is to invite commission of petty crimes," the mayor said.

"With them, money circulates only in Catbalogan," he added. "They do not buy gas or fuel that goes out of Catbalogan."

"Besides," he said, "there are less accidents."

He just vowed to make these drivers more informed by making them attend seminars on proper driving when they get their license yearly.