Manila – cen­tric

Tempo - - Editorial - Jul­lie Y. Daza

THE last time Pres­i­dent Duterte gave an or­der to DOTr Usec and MMDA GM Tim Or­bos, it was, “Speed things up, kawawa ang mga tao.” Pity the peo­ple who lose six hours of their 24 – but who’s count­ing the hours lost dur­ing that all-day all­night grid­lock on EDSA last Satur­day?

Can you blame Mr. Davao for not feel­ing at home here?

But now Tim Or­bos is telling us – this was be­fore last Satur­day – that “things are mov­ing” and those Build Build Build projects are on track (even with­out a de­cent rail in sight).

And if we can make traf­fic flow for strangers from ASEAN, why not for our­selves ev­ery sin­gle blessed day? MMDA’s nose-in nose-out at bus ter­mi­nals was an un­ex­pected achieve­ment be­fore ASEAN. The “Trapiko, Trapik Mo” slo­gan was a hit long be­fore the ASEAN hol­i­days. While MMDA has been tow­ing il­le­gally parked ve­hi­cles, as un­suc­cess­fully as Sisy­phus rolling his stone up the moun­tain, barangay lead­ers con­tinue to look the other way, de­fy­ing MMDA, rea­son, and the com­mon good.

Ob­struc­tions on streets and side­walks cause 50 per­cent of traf­fic jams, ac­cord­ing to Tito Sotto. Art Tu­gade’s try­ing to start a trend by mov­ing DOTr to Clark. Tim won­ders: “Why are we so Manila-cen­tric?”

He should ask why no one in Congress has a plan to struc­ture a mod­ern me­trop­o­lis north or south of the old cap­i­tal. What, only Greggy Araneta is in­ter­ested in de­vel­op­ing Caloocan?

Metro Manila: Does it have a fu­ture if that fu­ture is un­in­hab­it­able? Tim prom­ises el­e­vated walk­ways branch­ing out from EDSA. He en­ter­tains wish­ful thoughts of eject­ing LTO and Let Them Fry, Roast, and Burn (LTFRB) out of prime land.

One of these days some­one should whis­per in Digong’s ear: Mala­cañang doesn’t en­joy good feng shui if that maze of streets can so cheek­ily shel­ter a den of in­iq­uity for a drug queen, her daugh­ter, and the fam­ily busi­ness.

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