Random Thoughts

STRICT ENFORCEMENT OF TRAFFIC IN THE CITY. The mini-bus I rode on my way to Lingayen was flagged down by a POSO enforcer for parking along the road in front of the Caltex gasoline station on Perez Boulevard to wait for passengers.

The driver did not deny the charge but argued that he did not see any sign that says he could not park there to pick up passengers in the area. The POSO man ignored his argument and proceeded to issue him citation ticket (first offenders: P300). Tsk, tsk.  I hope the driver learned his lesson not to be pasaway.

A fellow passenger commented that the POSO enforcers in Dagupan are very strict, unlike in Lingayen, Alaminos and Bolinao.

At this point, I recalled a part of Mayor Belen Fernandez’s State of the City Address (SOCA) on April 3, that stated in part: “Dagupan Lungsod ng Disiplina-Lasting Solutions to Dagupan’s Traffic Woes.”

In instilling discipline in the city, Mayor Belen always leads by example. In her desire to solve the nagging traffic problem in the city, she had to closely observe and understand habits of motorists by staying out in the streets herself in order to arrive at solutions.

It was only then when she directed the reinstallation of traffic lights (this time with digital counters) in key strategic points in the city. That eased traffic in the city a bit.

Then I recalled a local shop owner who came to the PUNCH office as we were doing presswork, to report how POSO men were allegedly harassing him constantly for parking in front of his store and for allowing his customers to do the same.

He complained that he’d been dutifully paying his business taxes but the city government is preventing him from conducting his legitimate business by keeping away his customers. He said the city was killing his business.

I had to tell him that the POSO men were just enforcing the ordinance that was already in effect, and having his customers park momentarily with their blinkers should not pose a problem to indicate that they are aware they are in a No parking zone, and would only stay for a short reasonable time.

Then he complained about the absence of any public consultation and full disclosure of the provisions in the ordinance. So I provided him a copy of the ordinance that was published in full in THE PUNCH, as I explained that no ordinance is passed without a public hearing.

He then pointed out to us that there is a national law that prevents the passing of any local ordinance affecting a national highway like what the city council did. (A.B. Fernandez Avenue, he said, is a national road).

At this point, my publisher, Ermin, who overheard the conversation, advised the businessman to ask his lawyer to question the ordinance before the city council to prove his point because arguing it in media would be pointless.

The man headed to the exit door, and mumbled that he will just wait for Brian Lim to become the next mayor. Question is: How often is Brian in the city these days? – Leonardo Micua


DEMAND RESPECT FROM FOREIGNERS.  Foreigners, young and old alike, flock to the Bureau of Immigration Office in Pangasinan located at the Dagupan City Astrodome in Barangay Tapuac from Monday to Friday.

They go there to update the status of their stay in the Philippines (in Pangasinan in particular) whether as student, tourist, immigrant, etc.

So many nationalities, so many looks and scents of perfume, as well as natural scent.

Different attires, hairstyles, skin and eye color also. Various languages, accents and intonation, too.

But what I, as a real Filipino, wish and I hope the Immigration Dagupan office leadership will strictly enforce implement is proper attire for its clients.

No shorts, no sandos, no slippers.

Respect to the government office please.

I see many foreigners (Caucasians especially) go there as if they just woke up from bed—in slippers, faded and tattered shorts and sandos showing their hairy armpits. You think this is okay?

Do you see Filipinos appearing in such attires in offices overseas? Have you seen any of our countrymen go to the US Embassy in Manila in such attire? I don’t think so. And I don’t think the embassy guards would allow them entry  in their own embassies as well.

While it is true these foreigners pay Philippine government their dues, it is but proper they show a modicum of respect to our government by dressing up properly whenever they go to our offices.

During the time of then Kuya Bert Garcia at the BI office in Dagupan, he strictly required proper attire for transacting business inside the office, regardless of nationality or citizenship.

It was a requirement that everyone complied with it, no exemption.

I relayed this sentiment to the current Immigration head of Pangasinan Paul Verzosa when I saw him last week.  He gladly welcomed it.

By the way, the Immigration Office in Dagupan has moved to another location, a much bigger one, just 10 meters away from its old location, still inside the Dagupan Astrodome.

To Sir Paul, I hope this proper attire requirement will be strictly enforced ASAP.

Nakakabastos kasi sa opisina ninyo at sa sambayanang Pilipino kung hahayaan na lang natin ang mga banyaga at mga kapuwa orihinal na Pilipino na nag-iba na ng citizenship, na pumupunta sa inyo para mag-ayos ng kanilang papeles na feeling bagong gising lang pero okay na sa tingin nila ang kanilang kasuotan.

Proper attire plus proper hygiene. Umayos kayo. —Tita Roces

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