Lack of plan to solve traffic crisis delays hearing on emergency powers

Commuters still opt to take the Metro Rail Transit (MRT) instead of braving the traffic on EDSA on Tuesday despite the reported improvement on the flow of traffic along the major thoroughfare. The Highway Patrol Group said it is still adjusting on their second day of managing traffic on EDSA. (MNS photo)

Commuters still opt to take the Metro Rail Transit (MRT) instead of braving the traffic on EDSA on Tuesday despite the reported improvement on the flow of traffic along the major thoroughfare. The Highway Patrol Group said it is still adjusting on their second day of managing traffic on EDSA. (MNS photo)

MANILA, Aug 30 (Mabuhay) – The Senate Committee on Public Services will hold off hearings on the proposal to grant President Rodrigo Duterte emergency powers to solve the traffic crisis pending a detailed plan from the Department of Transportation (DOTr), Senator Grace Poe said Tuesday.

The Senate panel, chaired by Poe, was scheduled to conduct its second hearing Tuesday morning on the proposed emergency powers.

Poe, however, said the DOTr has yet to submit a draft measure that will detail the concrete projects it aims to implement to address the traffic problems.

“The Executive branch is in a hurry to pass the emergency powers bill, but based on our hearings, we have learned that the DOTr and the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority have yet to come up with concrete projects under the emergency powers bill,” Poe said.

The Senate has already heard the proposals of urban planners and the transport and commuter groups, and expects the DOTr to incorporate suggestions from stakeholders.

“Paano tayo gagawa ng epektibo at komprehensibong plano kung hindi natin nakukunsulta ang mga apektadong sektor? Sana hindi tayo magsayang ng pera at oras sa pagpapatupad sa mga planong hindi naman lubusang mapapakinabangan ng taumbayan,” Poe said.

In the August 25 hearing, DOTr officials asked the Senate panel to give them two weeks to prepare a bill of particulars, including list of proposed projects, to solve the traffic crisis.

“Sa ilalim ng mga proposed emergency power bills, two to three years lang ibinigay natin sa kanilang palugit. Sana naman hindi maubos iyung palugit na iyun sa pagpaplano lamang,” Poe said.

“Dapat ngayon, may maiprisinta na silang mga plano kung ano ang gagawin nila para masolusyunan ang trapiko sakaling hindi maipasa ang emergency powers bill,” the senator added. (MNS)

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