Malacañan, warns public on protest march for SAF44 on Sunday

admin   •   March 5, 2015   •   1491

FILE PHOTO: Presidential Communication Secretary Herminio ‘Sonny’ Coloma Jr. (UNTV News)

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañan is one with the nation in the commemoration of the fallen SAF44’s heroism during the January 25 Mamasapano operation.

This is Malacañan’s statement regarding the scheduled protest march on Sunday in honor of the fallen SAF troopers.

Malacañan also warned the public to be watchful on groups that may take advantage of the occasion.

“Notice that in recently, the demand for the President’s resignation arose with the threats of coup d’état and destabilization efforts, opportunist groups took advantage of the 29th anniversary of the EDSA People Power Revolution to incite the public in using the people power again against the current regime,” Presidential Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said in an interview.

Malacañan is confident on the PNPA Alumni Association who shall lead the protest march that it will not be mixed with politics.

Coloma admits that there are those who keep on contesting the Aquino administration and attempt to obstruct the peace process in Mindanao.

“We know that as we reach the realization of our ambitions, the more the challenger become desperate, it would be better for them to lay down alternative solutions aside from criticizing. We can’t stop thinking they don’t want true peace because they benefit from violence and conflict and they want Filipinos to divide and lose trust on one another to push their own agenda,” he added.

The Secretary warned opportunist groups that it is illegal and unconstitutional to call for support from the military and people power to oust President Aquino from office. (Nel Maribojoc / UNTV News)

Higher fences along MRT-3 railway tracks eyed to block outsiders

Marje Pelayo   •   October 16, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The management of Metro Rail Transit Line 3 is planning to put up higher fences following a series of accidents involving outsiders entering the train tracks.

On Tuesday (October 15), afternoon train operation was delayed for more than two hours after a man jumped onto the tracks in between Ayala and Buendia stations.

Authorities’ investigation revealed that the man was mentally disturbed. He died on the spot after sustaining head injuries from the incident.

MRT-3 management noted it was not the first time that an outsider was able to enter the MRT stations.

There were instances in the past where some thieves were arrested after sneaking into the tracks and stealing electric cables.

According to the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA), there were also reports about street children climbing and crossing the fences of MRT-3.

“Ang mga batang hamog na nang-i-isnatch dyan sa EDSA, dyan din tumatalon sa bakod ng MRT. Aakyatin nila iyan. Kaya nilang talunin (Street children who snatch [items from people] in EDSA, they usually cross over the fences of the MRT). They will cross over to the other side,” noted EDSA Traffic Chief Edison Nebrija.

“Ang hirap habulin niyan dahil bakod yan (It’s difficult to run after them crossing the fence),” he added.

The UNTV News Team traversed EDSA along the stretch of the MRT.

The team observed that some portions of the MRT have high fences, and some even with barbed wires.

However, other parts of the train tracks are low with no barriers at all, particularly between Ayala and Buendia stations where the accident happened.

But according to MRT-3 Director Engr. Michael Capati, the current design and structure of walls and fences in the train tracks followed the standards.

Capati added that even the distance between stations and the structure from nearby bridges were carefully planned by experts to ensure that coaches would not collide in the event of a strong earthquake.

Still, the MRT management is considering putting up taller fences at all MRT-3 tracks.

“Sapat naman siya pero nire-review namin ngayon kung ano pa yung mga kailangan namin gawin para maprevent yung mga ganitong intrusion (They’re on standards but we are still reviewing everything to determine what else can we do to prevent such intrusion),” Capati said.

The MMDA calls on the public to immediately report to authorities should they notice any suspicious-looking persons along MRT tracks, footbridges, and other similar structures to prevent accidents. – MNP (with reports from Joan Nano)

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Mass transport highway, express bus lane: proposed to solve EDSA traffic

Maris Federez   •   September 16, 2019

A lawmaker in the Lower House has proposed to dedicate an express bus lane, while another suggested reserving certain hours for mass transportations only along EDSA to solve the perennial traffic in Metro Manila’s major thoroughfare.

According to the data of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA), the average vehicular volume on EDSA is more than 400,000 every day and it is expected to increase further by 15 to 20% these BER-months.

House Committee on Transportation chairman Edgar Sarmiento suggested dedicating the innermost lane of EDSA as an express bus lane for those who will ride the MRT.

Three lanes will be allocated to private vehicles, while the outer lane will be for passenger buses that will stop in designated loading and unloading areas only.

These buses will be allowed to queue in for pick up and drop off of Metro Manila-bound passengers at the Paranaque Integrated Terminal Exchange and the Valenzuela Gateway Complex Terminal.

Sarmiento said this scheme will prevent bus drivers from over-speeding and from overstaying in loading and unloading areas and cause traffic congestion.

“We propose this to eradicate the kanya-kanya system of the buses wherein they compete with each other creating chaos through overtaking, overspeeding, and overstaying,” Sarmiento said.

Meanwhile, Caloocan representative Edgar Erice has proposed the dedication of mass transport highway which aimed at giving priorities to public commuters.

Under his proposal, private vehicles will be off-limit along EDSA on certain hours every day.

“Dapat yung limang lanes ng EDSA from 6 to 9am at 6 to 9pm dedicated lang sa mga public utility vehicles [The five lanes on EDSA shall be dedicated only to public utility vehicles from 6:00 to 9:00am and at 6:00 to 9:00pm],” he stated.

With the 6-to-9-scheme, private car owners will have the option to use alternative roads, leave the house earlier than usual, take the bus, or take EDSA only after 9 o’clock.

The MMDA said it welcomes the said proposals.

“Ito yung pro commuter talaga; para sa mga ordinaryo nating mamamayan na mas mapabilis yung byahe nila. Ngayon, pagdating sa private may mga alternatibo naman sabi nga ni Cong Erice [This is really pro-commuter; for the ordinary people to have faster travel experience. Now, when it comes to private (car owners), there are alternatives as what Cong. Erice said],” according to MMDA General Manager Jojo Garcia.

These suggestions, as well as the others, will go thru the MMDA’s engineering team for further study and screening for the selection of the feasible solutions for EDSA traffic.

The selected suggestions will be submitted to the Metro Manila Council meeting in October. (from the report of Vincent Arboleda) /mbmf

HPG to assist MMDA in managing EDSA traffic starting next week

Robie de Guzman   •   September 6, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police-Highway Patrol Group (PNP-HPG) will assist in managing traffic along EDSA starting Monday, Sept. 9, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) announced on Thursday.

Beginning 5 a.m. on Monday, the HPG Traffic Enforcement team led by Col. Emmanuel Tabuena will manage traffic from Timog Avenue to Ortigas Avenue. They will be assisted by at least 100 MMDA personnel.

The HPG will man the traffic from 5 a.m. to 1 a.m. to add to visibility of authorities on the road. They are also deputized to apprehend and issue citation tickets.

The MMDA traffic law enforcers, meanwhile, will man the traffic at EDSA Timog to Balintawak and Ortigas to Pasay.

MMDA general manager Jojo Garcia said the team-up seeks to apprehend errant motorists who violate traffic rules and reduce the congestion problem in Metro Manila’s major thoroughfare.

It will also be implemented to take advantage of the HPG authority, and to help MMDA traffic law enforcers against aggressive and “hard-headed” motorists.

The HPG is mandated by the law to contribute in crime prevention in addition to traffic enforcement.

“The HPG is a big help in instilling discipline to the motorists.” Garcia said in a press briefing.

Tabuena has expressed full support to the need to discipline drivers who are “one of the factors of traffic problem along EDSA especially during rush hours.”

“We want to show that the government is full force to ease the burden of the riding public,” Garcia said.

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