Lingunan Creek in Valenzuela City was awarded the ‘Most Improved Estero in Metro Manila’ by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources - National Capital Region (DENR NCR) in a simple awarding ceremony held Tuesday, 9 March 2021 at the BMB Amphitheater, Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wildlife Center in Quezon City.

Garnering a total of 86.53 points, Lingunan Creek led the pack of 14 waterways nominated by Metro Manila local government units to the “Gawad Taga-ilog: Search for Most Improved Estero in Metro Manila” conducted by the DENR NCR last year. The other winners are Park Creek 22 located in Marikina City as the first placer, and Bangkulasi River in Navotas City as the second placer. 

Grand winner Lingunan Creek was also awarded the ‘People’s Choice Award,” after getting the most number of “likes” and “hearts” in online public voting held via the official Facebook of DENR NCR, tallied at 10.8k combined reactions. 

The DENR NCR launched the “Gawad Taga-ilog: Search for Most Improved Estero in Metro Manila” in October last year to give recognition to the contribution and efforts of the local government units, particularly the barangays, in keeping their waterways clean and trash-free, as well as for their active participation in the on-going cleanup and rehabilitation of Manila Bay.

 “We would like to extend our gratitude to all the local executives of Metro Manila, including the barangay officials, who made an extra mile in their clean-up drive despite the challenges we are currently facing due to the pandemic,” DENR NCR Executive Director Jacqueline A. Caancan said during the awarding event. 

Caancan said the cleanup and improvement of esteros and other waterways done in the last two years, 2019 and 2020, are clear manifestations of the people’s support to the ongoing rehabilitation of Manila Bay. Of the 16 cities and a municipality comprising Metro Manila, 14 LGUs participated in the search.  No less than the local executives signed the nomination form for their “best estero” candidate. The estero nominees were judged according to the following criteria:  physical improvement - 40%, social mobilization, and transformation – 30%, sustainability, and replicability – 20%, and partnerships – 10%.

The barangay hosting the winning esteros were given a plaque of recognition and cash prizes amounting to Php 50,000 for the grand winner Lingunan creek, Php 35,000 for second placer Parian Creek 22, and Php 25,000 for Bangkulasi river.  An additional cash prize of Php 20,000 was given to Lingunan creek as the ‘People’s Choice’ awardee. ###