MMDA shortens curfew hours in Metro Manila beginning May 1

Aileen Cerrudo   •   April 28, 2021   •   303

MANILA, Philippines — The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has issued a resolution imposing shorter unified curfew hours in Metro Manila beginning May 1.

MMDA General Manager Jojo Garcia on Wednesday (April 28) said the shorter curfew hours would pave way for the economy to adjust amid the effects of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

The unified curfew will be from 10:00 p.m. to 4:00 a.m. in areas in Metro Manila to be imposed by local government units.

In-adjust namin ang curfew kahit papano po makaktulong po ito sa ekonomiya at the same time mamo-monitor pa rin natin ang mga nasa kalsada na walang naman kailangan gawin ay mapauwi po natin sila (We adjusted the curfew which would somehow help the economy and, at the same time, still monitor individuals still on the streets and if they have no important errands to do, we can send them home),” he said.

The previous curfew in Metro Manila was set from 8:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m.

Several establishments are also allowed to extend their operations, Garcia added, as long as minimum health protocols are strictly followed.

Metro Manila Mayors have previously recommended imposing a flexible modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) to slightly open the economy and at the same time continue to impose restrictions to prevent the spread of the virus.

Alam naman natin na kapag nag-GCQ (general community quarantine), pwede ka nang tumawid kahit saan. Wala nang higpit sa mga borders. Unlike kung MECQ tayo at ang ating karatig probinsya ay naka-GCQ, MGCQ kahit papaano mako-control nating ang mga borders natin (We know that under GCQ we can cross borders anywhere. There are no restrictions. Unlike under MECQ with neighboring provinces under GCQ, MGCQ we can still control our borders),” Garcia said.

The MMDA said it will follow the decision of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases if it will allow non-essential personnel to leave and enter the National Capital Region (NCR) Plus as part of border control measures. AAC

MMDA orders removal of obstruction under several flyovers in EDSA

Marje Pelayo   •   June 9, 2021

MANILA, Philippines —  The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has ordered the removal of obstructions at the ground level of three flyovers in EDSA.

On Tuesday (June 8), MMDA Chairman Benhur Abalos inspected the ground sections of flyovers in EDSA-Kamuning, Timog and Quezon Avenue.

This prompted the official to immediately order the clearing of all types of clutter and obstructions, including illegally-parked and abandoned vehicles, mostly involved in accidents in the said areas.

“Hindi pwedeng gamiting impounding ito. This is a national highway. Kalye ito. Maski sino, bawal gumamit nito. We will coordinate with the proper authorities on this matter,” Abalos stressed.

“No parking” and tow away signages will be placed in the said areas, he added.

He also appealed to the vehicle owners to refrain from parking at the ground level of flyovers, saying these should be open spaces.

“I will make sure that violators will be sanctioned and issued violation tickets for illegal parking,” Abalos said.

Meanwhile, the MMDA chief also instructed the heads of Metro Parkways Clearing Group (MPCG) and Road Emergency Group (REG) to remove unnecessary MMDA equipment in the said areas.

“The equipment that the MMDA is utilizing for emergency purposes will be retained, but not this much. Further, we will identify strategic locations to relocate the remaining equipment. MMDA should set an example here,” Abalos reiterated.

Discarded damaged orange barriers will be disposed of as garbage, while broken concrete barriers will be smashed and will be used as filling materials at the MMDA Tumana impounding area in Marikina.

The MMDA chief clarified that this directive is applicable to all areas within the jurisdiction of MMDA and not on EDSA alone.

The move is in line with the agency’s drive against urban decay and to ensure orderliness and cleanliness in the metropolis.

MMDA launches bayanihan to fight urban decay

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 2, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has launched a bayanihan program to fight urban decay.

The MMDA launched Metro Bayanihan which aims to intensify sidewalk clearing operations, cleaning of waterways, anti-littering, and anti-dengue drive to promote general cleanliness of Metro Manila and the well-being of its residents.

MMDA Chairman Benhur Abalos said the agency is closely coordinating with the local government units in Metro Manila to make sure that the clean-up can cover all barangays in the National Capital Region (NCR).

The said program aims to mitigate flooding, dengue, leptospirosis, and water-borne diseases especially at the beginning of the rainy season.

“Garbage-laden waterways are oftentimes breeding grounds of mosquitoes and other insects which can cause diseases. We are stepping up our efforts to make sure that these problems won’t add up to the burdens brought by this pandemic,” he said.

The MMDA will also conduct misting and fogging operations to eliminate possible breeding areas and kill dengue-carrying mosquitoes.

Abalos also appealed to the public to participate in the campaign to eradicate trash, diseases and encourage sustainable healthy urban living.

“During these times, we’ve seen how important a clean surrounding is, and we want every barangay to do their part in making Metro Manila clean, orderly, healthy, and more livable,” he said. -AAC

MMDA not likely to reimpose number coding scheme in NCR

Aileen Cerrudo   •   May 21, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) is mulling over reimplementing the number coding scheme in the National Capital Region (NCR) under the new normal setting.

MMDA EDSA traffic czar Edison Nebrija said the said traffic management program was only adopted to reduce the increasing volume of vehicles traversing Metro Manila.

“Such car restriction policy may not be suited anymore at this time kasi nga magkakaroon ng revenge spending ang mga tao dahil hindi nakakabiyahe. Wala nang masyadong kain sa labas, so andaming natitipid na pera. Baka mamaya, kung ibalik natin ang number coding bumili lang ng sasakyan,” he said.

(People will have reverse spending because they have not gone out for a while. They don’t eat out as much, so they were able to save money. If we reimplement the number coding, they might just buy new cars.)

To replace the number coding scheme, the agency is looking into the implementation of an incentive-type of policy.

Nebrija said the number of vehicles plying along EDSA decreased since the implementation of quarantine restrictions.

The official added that the heavy traffic that motorists still experience during rush hour is only because of the “road diet” due to the EDSA busway and bike lane.

Meanwhile, the agency has reimposed the truck ban along EDSA. (With reports from Asher Cadapan Jr.)

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