MANILA, Philippines — The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) is planning to close a total of 15 U-Turn slots on EDSA.
The plan aims to facilitate the construction of mass transport facilities in an effort to speed up traffic flow of buses on Metro Manila’s major thoroughfare.
“We want to lessen the travel time. Kung ma-achieve natin iyan by minimizing or closing the U-turn slots on this bus way ay malaking impact iyan. Mas mabilis,” said MMDA EDSA Traffic Chief Edison Nebrija.
U-Turn slots that might be closed include:
Quezon City Academy
Nebrija added that the project will exclusively assign the innermost lanes of EDSA for public utility buses in order to decongest traffic.
Though MMDA expects to receive mounting complaints from commuters and operators, Nebrija said the project’s purpose is ultimately to provide convenience to the greater public.
“Well maraming magrereklamo diyan. Baka may mag-file na naman ng TRO (Well, many will complain. Maybe another TRO will be filed),” he said.
Nonetheless, the MMDA is still open to suggestions and ideas on how improve EDSA’s busway system. MNP (with reports from Dante Amento)
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine National Police (PNP) has expressed its support to the move to implement a total lockdown after President Rodrigo Duterte floated the idea of police and military takeover amid violations of the Enhanced Community Quarantine in Luzon.
In a statement released on Friday (April 17), PNP Chief Police General Archie Gamboa said, “the Philippine National Police stands squarely in support of President Rodrigo R Duterte’s intention to decisively enforce a total lockdown for the entire period under Enhanced Community Quarantine.”
Gamboa said some local officials have nodded to impose tougher measures as “some violators feel they can get away with the enforcement of quarantine rules and local ordinances” because authorities are required to release them within 12 hours in the absence of inquest officers.
“I call on all Regional Directors to put action to the strong words of the President. I expect all of you to support this,” Gamboa said in the statement.
Latest figures show that as of April 18, 2020, a total of 126,302 ECQ violators were either arrested, fined and warned.
About 713 persons were arrested for hoarding, profiteering and manipulation of prices of medical products and other essentials, and 9,245 for violating the prohibition on public transport operations during the ECQ period.
The PNP Chief also ordered the massive crackdown on illegal activities that violate physical distancing such as illegal cockfights, card games, mah-jong, and drinking sessions in public places.
Meanwhile, the PNP Highway Patrol Group together with the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) reported that they have issued about 98 citation tickets to private motorists composed of 63 Temporary Operator’s Permit (TOP) and 35 Ordinance Violations Receipt (OVR) for being “Unauthorized Person Outside of Residence (UPOR) in relation to the Strict Implementation of COVID 19 Enhanced Community Quarantine” on Friday, April 17.
HPG Director, Police Brigadier General Eliseo DC Cruz reiterated the government’s advice to the public who are not frontliners to just to stay at home.
“PNP-HPG and MMDA will continue to enforce the provisions of the Extended ECQ on erring motorists and other road users to deny the spread of COVID-19 in our roads,” Cruz said in a report. —mbmf
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police-Highway Patrol Group (PNP-HPG) on Thursday warned it will confiscate the licenses of drivers of non-essential vehicles who have no valid reason to travel amid the enforcement of the enhanced community quarantine against novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Luzon.
The PNP-HPG issued the warning after a large volume of vehicles continued to travel along EDSA despite quarantine protocols.
On Wednesday, the PNP-HPG and the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) conducted a joint operation and inspected private vehicles and motorcycles that are not exempted from travel restrictions during the quarantine period.
Around 71 drivers were ticketed and had their licenses confiscated by authorities.
The PNP-HPG and the MMDA continued the operation along EDSA Santolan on Thursday and found several vehicles traveling and crossing other cities even if they are not among the authorized persons outside of residence.
PNP-HPG NCR regional chief Police Colonel Wilson Doromal said some of these drivers have presented their quarantine passes during the inspection while others offered excuses for being out of their homes.
“Yun nga may inihatid lang, may pupuntahan, emergency yung mga ganung palusot na sinasabi nila,” he said.
“Tapos yung iba naman nagpapakita ng quarantine pass pero sila naman eh taga ibang city so bakit? Pwede naman mamalengke sa kanilang syudad bakit dadayo pa sa iba?” he added.
Doromal said they have confiscated the licenses, and issued tickets and temporary operators permit (TOP) to drivers of apprehended vehicles.
According to MMDA EDSA Traffic chief Edison Nebrija, TOPs are only valid for three days.
“Good luck kung makuha niyo agad lisensya ninyo, at yung TOP itself will only be valid for 3 days, so basically after 3 days wala ka ng lisensya,” he said during an interview on UNTV’s Get it Straight with Daniel Razon program on Thursday.
Based on the guidelines released by the Joint Task Force on COVID Shield, only medical workers, funeral services, law enforcers, government officials and other essential service workers on skeleton force, and emergency responders are allowed to be outside of their residences during this period.
Also exempted from the restrictions are those working in basic or daily services such as supermarkets, banks, delivery service, money transfer, restaurant staff, market vendors and pharmacists, as well as those working in essential manufacturing, utility, and telecommunication companies.
These workers are required to bring and present at the checkpoints their IDs, quarantine passes and other documents as proof of their employment. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Joan Nano)
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