Thursday, November 4, 2010

Garbage piles up at Metro Manila cemeteries, surrounding streets

As in past years, the observance of All Souls’ Day ended on a messy
note as visitors to major Metro Manila cemeteries left behind not only
prayers for their dearly departed, but also tons of garbage.

However, repeated nagging by environmental groups appeared to have an
effect as the garbage this year was lesser than last year’s, according
to reports on dzBB radio on Tuesday.

It also said security remained tight at the cemeteries for visitors
who still wish to visit the tombs of their departed loved ones.

In Manila’s North Cemetery, dzBB’s Carlo Mateo reported at least eight
garbage trucks had to be brought in to haul the trash left behind by
visitors who spent All Souls’ Day there Monday.

The garbage trail extended all the way to streets near the cemetery
including Blumentritt Street and Aurora Boulevard, the report said.

Rains since Monday night made matters worse, adding mud to the garbage
trail inside and outside the North Cemetery, the biggest in the city.

However, cleaning crews said the garbage left behind this year was
“less" compared with that in last year, but they did not elaborate.

Joining the cleaning crew from the city government were members of
environmental group EcoWaste Coalition, some of whom wore “zombasura"

EcoWaste had called on visitors to cemeteries last week to shun the
“zombasura" image. “Zombasura" a combination of zombies and basura
(garbage) was a term used to denote those who mindlessly throw their
garbage anywhere while inside cemeteries.

At the Manila South Cemetery, meanwhile, dzBB’s Roland Bola reported
garbage was similarly left behind, but cleaned up as of 7 a.m., with
trash gathered and packed into plastic bags.

Most of the garbage included plastic wrappers and bags.

Tight security

Security remained tight at the cemeteries even though the government
had declared Tuesday a regular working day.

Police kept watch against possible violence similar to the fatal
stabbing of a 17-year-old boy in what police believe to be a gang war
Sunday night.

On Monday night, dzBB’s Sam Nielsen reported at least three people
were injured in violent incidents in cemeteries in eastern Metro

At Heavens Gate in Antipolo, an unidentified man stabbed a certain
Teddy Santos, 17, while a drunk man stabbed one Gringo Julian, 21.

At the Loyola Memorial Park, five unidentified men assaulted a certain
John Paul Magpayos, 16, who was rushed to the Amang Rodriguez Memorial
Medical Center.

Rains to continue

Meanwhile, the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical
Services Administration (PAGASA) said an Intertropical Convergence
Zone (ITCZ) affecting Central and southern Luzon, the Visayas and
Mindanao and a tail-end of a cold front affecting northern Luzon will
bring rains to these areas.

“The whole country will experience mostly cloudy skies with scattered
rainshowers and thunderstorms becoming widespread rains over the
eastern sections of Central and Southern Luzon," it said in its 5 a.m.

Moderate to strong winds blowing from the northeast will prevail over
Luzon and coming from the southeast and east over Eastern Visayas and
the coastal waters along these areas will be moderate to rough.

Light to moderate winds coming from the southeast to east will prevail
over the rest of the country with slight to moderate seas.

Strong to gale force wind is expected to affect the seaboards of
Luzon, prompting PAGASA to urge fishing boats and small seacraft to
avoid going out to sea, and bigger craft to watch out for big waves.


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