Officials earning P100k/month should take public transpo once a week: lawmaker

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 14 2019 12:48 PM | Updated as of Oct 14 2019 01:33 PM

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Public officials who earn at least P100,000 a month should take the public transportation at least once a week to come up with better solutions to the commuter problems in Metro Manila, a lawmaker said Monday.

Iligan Rep. Frederick Siao said the proposal, which could take around 1,000 to 2,000 vehicles off the road, will cover officials with salary grade 26 or at least P100,000 per month, including mayors, congressmen, bureau chiefs, and Cabinet secretaries.

Siao, who is vice chairman of the House public order committee, said he would file the proposal when Congress resumes its session in November.

"Ipakita natin iyong empathy towards the riding public. Kailangan natin maranasan, especially high-ranking officials, kung paano pumila, makipagsiksikan gaya ng ordinaryong mamamayan," he told radio DZMM.

"Mas makakapagbigay tayo ng magandang solusyon sa krisis ng transportation if you personally experience it," he added.

(Let's show empathy towards the riding public. We, especially high-ranking officials, need to experience how to line up, cram ourselves inside public vehicles like ordinary citizens. We will be able to give better solutions to the transport crisis if you personally experience it.)

President Rodrigo Duterte's spokesman and chief legal counsel, Salvador Panelo, on Friday commuted 4 hours to the presidential palace, taking up a dare from left-wing groups to disprove their claim that the country was mired in a "transport crisis."

Traffic authorities in recent months have strictly enforced existing and new regulations along EDSA, including limiting buses to the rightmost lanes and banning buses from the provinces from dropping off and picking up passengers in areas outside their terminals.

Traffic jams result in P3.5 billion in daily losses to the Philippine economy, according to a study by the Japan International Cooperation Agency.

Gridlocks have been aggravated by train breakdowns, most recently at the LRT-2, which stretches from Pasig City to downtown Manila. It has been on limited operations since a fire in early October.

DZMM, October 14, 2019