Mga motoristang mababangga sa MMDA barriers sa EDSA, posibleng kasuhan – HPG

Robie de Guzman   •   September 29, 2020   •   274

MANILA, Philippines – Nagbabala ang Philippine National Police-Highway Patrol Group (PNP-HPG) na maaaring maharap sa kaso ang mga motorista na maaksidente o mababangga sa barriers na inilalagay sa kahabaan ng EDSA.

Ayon kay PNP-HPG director PBrig. Gen. Eliseo Cruz, sila na ang mag-iimbestiga at magsasampa ng kaso sa mga motorista na makakasira ng mga barrier ng Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) alinsunod sa kanilang kasunduan.

“Yun ang naging arrangement namin sa MMDA na for everytime na that there’s a crash involving especially yung mga barriers na nilatag ng DoTr at MMDA, kami na magpa-file ng case doon sa involved driver for Reckless Imprudence resulting in Damage to Property, so kami na humahawak ng kaso,” ang wika ni Cruz.

Paliwanag ng HPG official, layunin nito na mabawasan ang mga nasasangkot sa aksidente lalo’t karamihan sa mga ito ay nagbabayad lang ng danyos at hindi nasasampahan ng kaso.

“Hindi nadadala ang mga driver so dapat nakakasuhan din, para talaga mag-ingat sila sa pagmamaneho,” ang sabi ni Cruz.

Sinabi rin ng opisyal na bahagi ng responsibilidad ng mga motorista na alamin ang mga batas trapiko at iba pang patakaran sa kalsada upang hindi sila mabigyan ng ticket.

Kabilang sa mag patakaran ang pagbabawal sa pagdaan sa EDSA busway at pagsasara sa ilang u-tun slot sa bahagi ng EDSA North Avenue.

Sa inspeksyon ng HPG ngayong Martes, maraming motorista ang nasita dahil sa pagdaan sa Busway upang umikot sa U-turn slot na noong Lunes pa isinara ng MMDA.

Katwiran ng mga nahuling driver, hindi nila alam na isinara na ito upang bigyang daan ang tuluy-tuloy na pag-arangkada ng mga pampasaherong bus sa naturang ruta.

“Hindi nila puwedeng sabihin na hindi nila alam, pag ganyan ang busway ay para lamang sa bus so maraming violation ang puwedeng ibigay natin sa kanila… kelangan sundin natin ang batas trapiko,” ang pahayag ni Cruz.

Sa huli, pinagbigyan muna ng HPG ang mga ito at pina-alalahanang sumunod sa polisiya. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Lea Ylagan)

MMDA to close another EDSA U-turn slot starting Oct. 26

Robie de Guzman   •   October 21, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) announced it will be closing another U-turn slot along EDSA next week.

In an advisory, the MMDA said the U-turn slot located near Corregidor Street (northbound and southbound) will be closed to vehicular traffic starting Oct. 26.

This follows the closure of the U-turn slots in front of Quezon City Academy and along EDSA North Avenue in the past few weeks.

The agency advised motorists to take detour routes.

For southbound vehicles, they may take the U-turn slot after Dario Bridge/in front of Landers.

Northbound vehicles may take the U-turn slot at EDSA-Quezon Avenue flyover.

The MMDA earlier said the closure of U-turn slots along EDSA is to ensure the smooth operation of the EDSA Busway Project.

The EDSA busway project designates the innermost lane of EDSA as exclusive lane for buses travelling along the national highway.

MMDA spox Pialago says sorry but stands by post on detained activist Nacino

Robie de Guzman   •   October 19, 2020

MMDA spokesperson Celine Pialago

MANILA, Philippines – Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) spokesperson Celine Pialago on Monday apologized to detained activist Reina Mae Nacino for her controversial remark about her plight and her late infant, Baby River.

Pialago drew flak over the weekend for her social media post where she urged the public to know Nacino’s story first before sympathizing with her.

In her post on Sunday, Pialago criticized Nacino’s supporters, whom she said are turning her grief and plight into a “drama serye.”

Nacino, an urban poor organizer facing charges of illegal possession of explosives and firearms, was only allowed by the court a few hours to attend the wake and burial of her three-month old infant.

Baby River died of pneumonia last Oct 9 while Reina Mae remained in detention. The infant was buried on Friday at the Manila North Cemetery, with critics blasting the strong presence of police and jail guards escorting Nacino.

Pialago apologized to those who thought her comment was insensitive to the plight of mothers who lost their child, but stressed she won’t take back her “drama serye” remark.

“When I posted drama serye, I didn’t mean na tratuhing drama yung hinagpis ni Reina it’s not that… I never meant na dapat hindi sya maghinagpis bilang isang ina. Nawalan rin ako ng mga mahal ko sa buhay, I know the feeling wag nating ilipat dun sa context na yun,” she said in an interview.

“Ang dating kasi nung iba dun sa sinabi kong drama serye wala na siyang karapatang maghinagpis kasi political prisoner siya. Ang dating wala na siyang karapatang bumisita eh binigyan nga sya ng furlough eh… nakikidalamhati kami sayo sa aspeto na yan dahil wala nang sasakit pa sa mamatayan ng anak,” she added.

She said she did not mean to attack Nacino’s grief with the loss of her baby when she used the term.

She also emphasized that the “drama serye” she was referring to were people who were “capitalizing” on Nacino’s situation to gain sympathy from the public and turn them against the government.

“Stop thinking doon sa mga hindi nakakaintindi. Stop thinking na I’m insensitive enough for them. Pero please, sana naman… Salamat doon sa mga nakakaintindi na ang pinupunto nung drama serye huwag palakihin, wag gamitin yung unfortunate situation para lang ma-highlight na mapang-api ang gobyerno,” she said.

Pialago also stressed that her comment is her own and not part of her role as MMDA’s spokesperson.

MMDA general manager Jojo Garcia echoed Pialago’s statement and assured that her opinion does not reflect the agency’s stand on the issue.

“Nagsalita siya at her own capacity, it’s not the stand of MMDA. Kung may personal opinion siya, it’s her right to say that,” Garcia said.

“I think Asec. Celine is responsible enough to handle yung ganitong klase ng mga situation,” he added.

Malacañang, meanwhile, refused to comment and would rather let Pialago handle the issue.

“Tingin ko po personal na opinion niya yan, hindi naman po kasi related sa MMDA yang issue, so hayaan po natin na magkaroon ng personal na opinion si Spokesperson Pialago,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said.

Nacino and two others were arrested in Tondo, Manila in November 2019 for alleged illegal possession of firearms and explosives. She was one month pregnant at the time of her arrest.

She gave birth last July and was ordered separated from her baby in August despite her pleadings filed before Manila Regional Trial Court. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Joan Nano)

Overgrowth of water lilies suspends Pasig River ferry system

Marje Pelayo   •   October 7, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) announced on Tuesday (October 6) the temporary suspension of the Pasig River Ferry System due to overgrowth of water lilies and other aquatic plants that clog the river.

In a message to reporters, MMDA chief information officer Sharon Gentalian said the operations of the Pasig River Ferry System will remain suspended “until further notice.”

The overgrowth of water hyacinth has long been a problem affecting the overall operation of the ferry system as they clog the river especially during the rainy season blocking the way of barges and other vessels. 

Authorities say the water plants entangle the ferry’s propeller apart from pieces of trash already floating on the river, preventing boats from traveling at normal speed.

The MMDA revived the Pasig River system in April 2014 under then MMDA chair now Senator Francis Tolentino to decongest major roads in Metro Manila.

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