Sunday, October 19, 2008

Davao's Artica Dome Tops List Of White Elephant Projects By LBP

The Land Bank of the Philippines claimed to being very careful in approving loans applied for by local government units saying "mabibilang lang sa kamay" (that one can only count in his fingers)the local government projects financed by LBP that have turned into white elephants. This was the confirmation made by LBP senior vice president Delia Ladao during the press conference held at the Philippine Information Agency office last Saturday.

However, Ladao did not deny the fact that the P300 million Artica Sports Dome project in Maa this city is on top of the list of white elephant projects in the city with money coming from LBP. The project was initiated during the time of mayor Benjamin de Guzman but was halted by mayor Rodrigo Duterte for environmental and other reasons (including financial irregularities).

It can be recalled that the project's viability was questioned even before construction started considering that it was sitting on a site susceptible to landslides and earthquakes. However, de Guzman went on with the project, leaving the millions of Dabawenyos responsible for the payment of the loan.

The bank is very careful in the evaluation and approval of local government projects, Ladao said. The Artica Sports Dome has however become a white elephant project for reasons out of the control of the bank, she added.

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