SUBIC BAY FREEPORT – The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) Chairman and Administrator Rolen C. Paulino has opened some of the gates at this premier Freeport’s perimeter fence, providing access to residents of Olongapo City.

According to the Chairman, the opening of gates at the perimeter fence is part of his administration’s thrust to create synergy with the adjacent community of Olongapo City where he was a former mayor.

Engr. Jomel Libut of the SBMA Engineering department said that the P70-million seven-kilometer Perimeter Fence project is now physically complete. He said that the fencing project will span from the Kalaklan Gate up to the Kalayaan Gate of this freeport.

He added that the P53-million 3.3-kilometer perimeter road rehabilitation project, which is already 80 percent complete, will improve the security and drainage of one of the thoroughfares of this premier Freeport zone.

Paulino, however, explained that the said access road was opened to ferry residents to medical facilities in case of an emergency, or provide access to firetrucks and ambulances since most of the houses near the fence are on hilly areas.

“These residents are situated very far from the access road of the city, and they cannot easily be reached in cases of emergency,” he said.

Paulino assured that he has already instructed the agency’s Law Enforcement
Department (LED) to patrol the area to deter any criminal activities. The SBMA official has also discussed with current Mayor Lenj Paulino of putting barangay patrols in each gate.

Aside from the residential areas, the Upper Sibul Elementary School, which is also situated beside the perimeter fence of the Freeport, has started face-to-face classes with its students.

Paulino made rounds at the elementary school talking to teachers and students who used to go around the city proper just to go to school. They were elated to know that the chairman has given them access to the gates of the perimeter fence.

But Paulino reiterated that LED officers will inspect the IDs of students using the access road as part of their standard operating procedure.

“Proper identification should be done to people using the access road, not just for the security of the Freeport, but for the safety of the pedestrians using the road as well,” he said.