MANILA — Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade on Monday assured the public that the construction of the P488-billion Metro Manila subway would continue in the incoming administration, saying all contracts and funding have already been secured.
During the "Duterte Legacy Summit" in Pasay City, Tugade said the construction of the ambitious subway will happen on the first or second week of June, which will commence once the tunnel boring machine is placed.
"In fact, the... transportation department will perform an activity to convince the people of the Philippines [this] is real at totoo," the transportation chief said, referring to the lowering of the tunnel boring machine.
"Most of the contracts involved in the construction of the subway is already awarded. In fact many have started. Hindi na po matitigil yan," he added.
Tugade emphasized that the funds have already been prepositioned through loans agreed by the Department of Finance and the Japanese government, while the right of way has already been started.
"Kung mayroon nang pondo, kung gawa na ang kontrata ng right of way, sabihin mo sa akin... paano hihinto yan? Tuloy na tuloy ang subway."
He urged the public though to continue supporting the next administration and to stop casting doubts on the subway construction, the common station of which may be opened before this year ends.
"Sana lang pabaunan niyo ng dasal at tulong ang mga darating na administrasyon upang matuloy na itong proyekto na ito. Wag niyong pabaunan ng agam-agam, wag niyo pabaunan ng duda, pabaunan niyo ng tiwala," he said.
The underground railway will be 34 kilometers long stretching from Valenzuela to Bicutan in Taguig City and the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 3 in Pasay City with 17 stations, the Department of Transportation has said.
It also seeks to cut the travel time from Quezon City to NAIA to at least 35 minutes.
Once completed, the Metro Manila subway will serve at least 370,000 passengers daily, said the DOTr.