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MMDA denies experimenting on policies

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The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has denied experimenting on new policies to address traffic congestion.

MMDA spokesperson Celine Pialago on Monday responded to the tirades that the agency has been getting recently.

In a lengthy open letter posted on her official Facebook page, the spokesperson said that all the policies being imposed by MMDA are all well studied, and are not experiments.

Pialago noted that all the policies they are imposing were passed by the Metro Manila Council (MMC), the governing and policy-making body of MMDA.  MMC is composed by Metro Manila mayors.

“Unang sagot sa pinaka bagong batikos, hindi po kami nag-eeksperimento. Lahat po ng polisiya na meron at ipinapatupad ang MMDA ay masusing pinag -aralan at naipasa po sa Metro Manila Council (First answer to the newest tirade, we are not experimenting. All the policies that we are enforcing were studied well and were passed by the Metro Manila Council),” she said.

“Uulitin ko po, naipasa sa METRO MANILA COUNCIL. Ang MMC po ay binubuo ng mga Metro Manila mayors, bawat polisiya po ay pinagbobotahan at pinag-aaralan, nagkakaroon ng information campaign, nagkakaroon ng dry run, nagkakaroon ng public hearing bago maisakatuparan (I repeat, they were passed by the METRO MANILA COUNCIL. The MMC is comprised by Metro Manila mayors, and each policy is being voted, studied thoroughly. We also conduct information campaign, hold dry runs, and a public hearing is being held before a policy is enforced by MMDA),” the spokesperson added.

Earlier, Sen. Grace Poe, who chairs of the Senate public services committee, set a hearing on the controversial provincial bus ban.

“Bakit ginagawa tayong parang science project? Puro eksperimento, habang taumbayan naman ang nagdurusa (Why are they treating us like science project? So many experiments while the public is suffering),” the senator told the media.

The MMDA spokesperson also explained the salience of Yellow Lane, and why it is important to strictly enforce it along EDSA.

“Ang Yellow Lane ay para sa mga pampublikong sasakyan, mga city buses at taxi, ito po ang dalawang linyang nasa pinaka kanang bahagi sa EDSA, diyan po sila nakapwesto dahil nandyan din po ang ating mga designated loading and unloading areas (The Yellow Lane is for public vehicles—city buses and taxis—it is the two lanes in the rightmost part of EDSA where our designated loading and unloading area is situated),” she said.

Pialago mentioned so many problems about city buses which epitomizes to their unruly behavior along EDSA.

According to her, the MMDA is addressing the challenges on the Yellow Lane Policy by strictly enforcing it; dispatching enforcers; and through the No Contact Apprehension Policy (NCAP).

Despite such efforts, Pialago said that traffic congestion in Metro Manila still exists because of the high volume of vehicles; accidents; 150 perpendicular roads going to EDSA; illegally parked vehicles; 77 choke points; increasing population; 47 bus terminals on EDSA; 15 malls; the increase on the Yellow Lane fine is still not enough; weather; undisciplined drivers and passengers; lack of road networks; public transportation; lack of traffic enforcers; and lack of trust to the MMDA and the policies it is imposing.

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