Tongtóngan: The Governor’s See Pangasinan Listening Tour Returns, Partnership with PTOA and Pangasinan PPO Strengthened

LINGAYEN, Pangasinan—In celebration of this year’s Pangasinan Tourism Month, the Provincial Government of Pangasinan, through its Provincial Tourism and Cultural Affairs Office (PTCAO), held another session of Tongtóngan: The Governor’s See Pangasinan Listening Tour where Hon. Governor Ramon V. Guico III led the induction of the newly elected officers of the Pangasinan Tourism Officers Association (PTOA) and signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Pangasinan Provincial Police Office (PPO) for the creation and activation of a Tourist Police Unit in the province last September 15, 2023 at the Ceremonial Hall in the Urduja House, Capitol Complex.

Governor Guico was joined by Hon. Board Member Marinor De Guzman (Chairperson for Committee on Tourism, Foreign Affairs and Migrant Workers Concerns), PTCAO Chief Maria Luisa Amor-Elduayan, Pangasinan PPO Director PCOL Jeff Fanged, and PTOA President and Dasol Tourism Officer Guendoline Bustamante. Local chiefs of police, tourism officers, and other representatives were also present at the event.

In her message, PTOA President Bustamante asserted the PTOA’s active support in all tourism-related programs and activities of the provincial government including but not limited to the likes of Agew na Pangasinan, Pista’y Dayat, Limgas na Pangasinan, Pangasinan Tourism Month, Green Canopy Project through the Kampo Kalangwëran volunteer program, and other related environment projects as well as heritage preservation and cultural education program through farm tours and museum visits. PTOA President Bustamante likewise affirmed the association’s support and active partnership with the Pangasinan, Ang Ganda Mo! promotional series directed by the Regional News Group and other possible partnerships with government agencies and non-government organizations. Database generation, capacity development of tourism officers, tourism orientation for newly designated tourism officers, and lobbying for the creation of plantilla items for tourism officers to ensure continuity of work were also specified by PTOA President Bustamante as the association’s priorities.

Meanwhile, Pangasinan PPO Director PCOL Fanged extended his utmost gratitude to Governor Guico and the provincial government for the formal activation of the province’s Tourist Police Unit after seven years since its original proposal. In turn, PCOL Fanged assured the provincial government and its constituents that the Tourist Police Unit will endeavor to uphold its responsibilities in safeguarding tourists in the province and its tourism communities.

In response to the participants’ spirited and united support to the provincial government’s tourism aspirations, Governor Guico shared with the participants’ the administration’s plans to construct an airport in Bolinao which is timely to the proposed plan of a construction of an international airport in Alaminos City. Governor Guico also shared plans of the Provincial Government of Pangasinan in signing a joint venture agreement with San Miguel Corporation for the Phase 1 of the proposed Pangasinan Link Expressway (PLEX) from the town of Binalonan to Lingayen, while Phase 2 is proposed to link Lingayen all the way to Alaminos City to ease traffic especially during summer when vacationers usually flock to coastal tourist destinations in western Pangasinan.

Governor Guico briefly broached the topic of the construction of a seawall along the Lingayen Baywalk, highlighting the importance of letting nature take its course instead of putting up unnecessary man-made structures especially those without fundamental planning and proper consultation. He underscored the prioritization of the implementation of safety policies and practices at tourist destinations as well. Relative to the improvement of tourism establishments, Governor Guico advised PTOA members to come up with standards that are fair in comparison to the services rendered by local accommodation establishments. In line with his advocacy for cultural heritage preservation, the governor advised LGUs without tourist attractions like islands, beaches, waterfalls, and the likes to consider pursuing cultural mapping in order to establish cornerstone exhibits/museums to promote their respective town or city history and culture. Plans to further develop the town of Lingayen, being the capital of the province, through thorough urban planning were also emphasized.

The event was concluded with a Banáan Pangasinan Provincial Museum tour for PTOA members.


Photos: KFC & RSR

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