ORMOC CITY – Following the recent success of the plebiscite forming four new super barangays here, City Mayor Lucy Torres-Gomez expressed her wish for Ormoc to be a blue zone city, where people have low rates of chronic diseases and live longer than anywhere else.

“I wish for my beloved Ormoc to be a place where the happiness quotient is the main indicator for success… I wish for Ormoc to be as beautiful and as peaceful a place as the people who call it home. For all these reasons, we planted the Tree of Dreams,” she narrated.

During her State of the City Address (SOCA) on Tuesday, October 18, the mayor announced the launching of the Ormoc Polyclinic soon, which she plans to be accredited as a PhilHealth Konsulta Package provider so that residents can access free basic consultation and testing services.

The services, accordingly, will include Urinalysis, Sputum Microscopy, Pap Smear, Lipid profile (Total Cholesterol, HDL and LDL Cholesterol, Triglycerides), Electrocardiogram, Chest X-ray, and other critical tests. 

She also shared what the city government has undertaken to accomplish and nurture its vision for health, wellness, abundance, and prosperity, which she calls the “Tree of Dreams.”

The mayor said they have managed to reduce total crime volume by 28 percent compared to the same period last year. She added that their City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) is now in the process of finalizing the updated 10-year Local DRRM Plan for 2023 to 2033. 

“We have used the most up-to-date and most detailed risk maps to help us better plan—not just for disaster rescue and response, but more so, for Ormoc City to be the first truly disaster-resilient city,” she said.

She added that their approach to disaster resiliency will cover a range of measures from policy, to short- and medium-term solutions, to long-term infrastructure-based solutions, which include plans to implement disaster resilience not as stand-alone projects, but rather as incorporated features in mainstream development projects.

For the youth, she noted that DepEd Ormoc Division would focus on reading and comprehension through a reading camp after citing that reading and comprehension in the Philippines are trailing behind in the world index. 

Further, she said that the LGU’s scholarship program has set aside PHP 50 million with 501 scholars at present, amounting to PHP 11.5 million in scholarships so far.

Some of their notable infrastructure projects, meanwhile, she added, include creating a master plan for Ormoc’s city center that will cover the area of Ormoc Plaza, the food park, the museum, and an esplanade along the Malbasag River. 

In addition, she said that the Ormoc City Housing Office is also managing three housing projects with a total number of 2,306 housing units and that it is also managing the turnover of another 300 units donated by non-government organizations and groups.  Finally, she narrated that in terms of tourism, their tourism office has jump-started the city’s tourism activities to signal the revival of the industry after the effects of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. By Marie Tonette Marticio (EV Mail October 17-23, 2022 issue)