A picturesque linear park along Baseco Baywalk in Tondo was launched by the Manila city government Tuesday evening.
The new attraction features a freshly painted brick pathway and newly repaired street lamps that were previously installed along España Boulevard.
Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso said they aim to give residents of Baseco Compound a nearby place to stroll and do other leisure activities.
“Ang problema ng Baseco, walang espasyo para sa mga bata. Kailangan niyo pang lumabas ng lugar na ito para makapasyal kayo (The problem with Baseco is there is no space for children. You even have to go out of this area for a stroll),” he said in his speech during the inauguration. “Ito po ang payak at simpleng alay namin sa inyo (This is our simple offering to you).”
Domagoso said he is aiming to improve the image of the Baseco area which has earned a reputation for being crime-infested and home to poor communities.
“Ayokong mamaliitin tayo dahil lang tayo’y mahirap, dahil may dignidad sa pagiging mahirap, dahil tayo ay tao rin (I do not want others to look down on us just because we are poor, because there is dignity in being poor, because we are also human),” he said.
“Pipilitin naming maipataas ang antas ng pamumuhay dito (We will strive to raise the way of life of this community),” he added.
The Manila mayor urged residents to keep the park clean, be disciplined individuals, and cooperate with the city government so they can improve the quality of their lives.
“‘Pag itinama natin sa kaisipan natin at nagpursigi tayo sa buhay, tapos ang pamamahala ay masinop, mainam, episyente, mayroon palang magandang bukas na naghihintay sa atin (If we think right and persevere in life and the city govermment is prudent, effective, and efficient, there is a bright future waiting for us),” Domagoso said. “Tayo ang nagdadala ng karakter ng ating komunidad. Nasa kamay natin (We are the ones that reflect the character of our community. It is in our hands).”
The local chief executive also warned criminals to leave Baseco Compound, noting that a new police station in the area was recently established.
“Umalis kayo dito, uubusin ko kayo (Leave this place, I will finish you),” he warned. “May panahon pa ng pagbabago, magbago na kayo. Tumira kayo dito, maayos, mapayapa, hindi kayo nang-aapi ng kapwa mahirap, welcome kayo dito.” (There is still time to change, change now. You are welcome to live here if you will help keep the orderliness and peace and not harass your fellow poor people.)