Living with the Traffic
and Frustrating Etceteras in Manila
By Apolinario Villalobos
- THE TRAFFIC. As of the latest reckoning, Php3B of supposedly revenue flows down the drain, and which constitutes the estimated aggregate losses incurred by various businesses in Manila because of the hellish traffic. Expansion of the main city thoroughfares is out of the question because if this is done, frontage of buildings and sidewalks shall be sacrificed. Construction of more flyovers to strain the traffic shall take up five to six years, not to mention the need for more endurance on the part of the motorists and commuters while projects would be ongoing.
THE SUGGESTED SOLUTION IS THE STRICT CONTROL OF REGISTRATION OF NEW CARS, AS WELL AS, POLICIES THAT WOULD DETER THEIR ACQUISITION, ONE OF WHICH IS HIGHER TAX. ANOTHER OPTION IS THE STRICT IMPLEMENTATION OF “NO GARAGE, NO CAR” POLICY, ESPECIALLY, FOR THE RESIDENTIAL AREAS IN THE CITY WHERE PARKING EATS UP GREAT PORTIONS OF THE ROADS AND EVEN SIDEWALKS. ROAD PARKING IS UNFAIR FOR TAX PAYERS WHO COMMUTE BECAUSE THEY ARE MADE TO WALK ON THE STREET, THEREBY, PUTTING THEIR LIFE AT RISK OF BEING RAN OVER.
- THE FLOODED STREETS DURING RAINY DAYS. It is a wonder why the local governments do not learn their lesson from floods that seasonally make life of their constituents miserable. All they have to do is check regularly the waste waterways that traverse their areas, as these are regularly clogged with trash. They also seem to have forgotten about the manholes and drains that are deliberately broken down by mindless vandals as they convert them into trash bins.
THE SUGGESTED SOLUTION IS FOR THE RESIDENTS TO COOPERATE BY ALERTING THE OMBUDSMAN ABOUT THE IRRESPONSIBILITIES OF NON-PERFORMING BARANGAY OFFICIALS SO THAT THEY CAN BE APPROPRIATELY PENALIZED.
- THE TRUANTS AND SPOILED BRATS. It cannot be denied that due to the deeply-rooted lenient attitude of many parents, minors have the temerity to challenge the Curfew Policy, a defiant act emboldened by the negative effect of “gentle” aspect of the Filipino culture which just brought havoc to the society. Many parents even protect or defend their children who have committed criminal acts, especially, the use of illegal drugs.
THE SUGGESTED SOLUTION IS TO PENALIZE THE PARENTS OF ERRING MINORS. WHILE APPREHENDED MINORS SHALL BE DETAINED IN FACILITIES APPROPRIATE FOR THEIR AGE, THE PARENTS SHOULD BE DETAINED IN REGULAR JAILS, AS IF THEY, THEMSELVES, ARE THE OFFENDERS. PARENTS SHOULD NOT ONLY BE LECTURED ON THE FAULTS OF THEIR CHILDREN BUT THEY SHOULD BE MADE TO FEEL THE PAIN OF THE LAW.
- STUBBORN AND RECKLESS DRIVERS. The city roads are pestered by the devilish drivers whose recklessness and stubbornness put the lives of their passengers and even the innocent pedestrians on the line. They drive as if they own the road. Add to this, the drivers of illegal of conveyances such as vans and taxis. Since time immemorial, the LTFRB and LTO know about this but have done nothing, so that in time, they have added up to the hellish situation of the city traffic.
THE SUGGESTED SOLUTION IS FOR THE OUTRIGHT DISMISSAL OF THE LTFRB AND LTO PERSONNEL AND OFFICIALS WHO ARE FOUND TO HAVE MADE NEGLIGENCE PART OF THEIR ROUTINE. STILL, THE OPERATORS OF ILLEGAL CONVEYANCES MUST ALSO BE PENALIZED, TOGETHER WITH THEIR ERRING DRIVERS.
THERE ARE STILL MANY ETCETERAS THAT BUG THE CITY LIFE FOR WHICH THE NEW PRESIDENT WOULD REALLY NEED A STEELY RESOLVE AND IRON-CLAD DISPOSITION. THE QUESTION IS…WILL THE CONGRESS AND THE SENATE SHOW THEIR UTMOST COOPERATION BY GIVING HIM THE NEEDED “EMERGENCY POWER”?