The Toll Regulatory Board chief on Thursday acknowledged he was hurt by President Rodrigo Duterte's comments over the agency's handling of the alleged faulty RFID system involving North Luzon Expressway toll plazas.
Duterte called TRB management "incompetent" in a press briefing that aired late night Wednesday, adding he wouldn't hesitate to look for replacements.
TRB executive director Abraham Sales said in an interview on Teleradyo that the board would fix the issues link to the malfunctioning RFID system.
"Aayusin po ang mga problema kahit may mga ganyan nga pong nakakarating sa atin. Nakakasakit sa damdamin po natin," said Sales. "Ang pinagtutuuan natin ay trabaho para solusyunan ang problema."
(We will solve the problem, even as hurtful things have been said. We just focus on our work to find a solution to these problems.)
Sales said the enforcement of the cashless toll collection system was just one of the TRB's projects.
He assured that his office has been coordinating with NLEX, which he said has always done its part to address glitches.
"Ginagawa naman ng operator ang obilgasyon na ayusin po iyan. Kung kami man ay nagkukulang pasensya na lang po at may limitasyon din po kami sa opisina. Ang importante po na may maibigay kaming kasolusyunan, said Sales.
(The toll plaza operator is doing its obligation to solve the issue. We ask for their patience for our shortcomings, but we do have limitations in our office. What's important is we are providing solutions.)
When asked if Transportation Sec. Art Tugade has told him and others to resign, Sales said: "Kami na lang po ang mag-uusap ni Secretary tungkol po dyan. Aayusin po na muna natin at dedesisyunan po natin pagdating ng tamang panahon."
(That's between me and the Secretary. We'll solve this first then decide at the right time.)
He also commented on Duterte's proposal to replace them with former military men.
"Iba ang pagpapatakbo ng militar po. Siguro makakatulong din pagka militar po ang naa-assign sa opisina."
(The military has its own way of doing things. Maybe it might help if they are assigned to the office.)
Duterte said the TRB should have at least assessed the efficiency of the RFID system before allowing the North Luzon Expressway Corp. to put it in place.
“If you cannot perform what is expected of you, then the best that you can do for decency sake, resign, and do not wait to be fired because masakit iyan, mapahiya ka.”
Tugade apologized over the snafu involving the RFID system.
The TRB board members are composed of Tugade and officials from the Departments of Public Works and Highways, and Finance, and representatives from the private sector.