Transport groups lose bid to junk some traffic ordinances in Metro ManilaBy Tetch Torres
MANILA, Philippines—The Court of Appeals upheld the legality of various traffic ordinances issued by Local Government Unites in Metro Manila as it denied for lack of merit the petition filed by various transport groups.
In a 16-page decision issued by the Court of Appeals 6th Division through Associate Justice Edwin Sorongon, the traffic ordinances issued by the various local government units in Metro Manila “are not legally informed. Neither were they enacted in violation of the Constitution.”
The assailed traffic ordinances were issued by governments of City of Manila, Quezon City, Valenzuela, Caloocan, San Juan, Navotas, Las Piñas, Taguig, Pasay, Paranaque, Muntinlupa, Mandaluyong, Makati, Pasig and Pateros.
Petitioners led by Federation of Jeepney Operators and Drivers Association of the Philippines (FEJODAP) said the ordinances violated the law that created the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and Republic Act 416 or the Act to compile the laws relative to land transportation and traffic rules.
They added that under the law, it is the MMDA, not the local government units who are authorized to implement a single ticketing system.
The appeals court, in its ruling said “extant from the foregoing discussion is the realization that the police power granted to the LGUs by the Local Government Code of 1991 was never taken away from them by the advent of the MMDA law in 1995.”
“This being so, then it is more obvious that there is no conflict between the assailed ordinances in relation to the Local Government Code against RA9274 (the law creating the MMDA. Withal, it cannot be denied that since each of the said laws has their specific boundaries, there is no issue of conflict to speak of,” the appeals court said.
“Thus, where there is a traffic law or regulation validly enacted by the legislature or those agencies to whom legislative powers have been delegated, the petitioner is not precluded-and in fact is duty-bound-to confiscate and suspend or revoke drivers’ licenses in the exercise of its mandate of transport and traffic management as well as the administration and implementation of all traffic enforcement operations, traffic engineering services and traffic education programs,” the appeals court said.
With regards to compelling the MMDA to draw the single ticketing system, the appeals court said petitioners led by Federation of Jeepney Operators and Drivers Association of the Philippines (FEJODAP) failed to give enough basis for the court to compel MMDA to act.
“Perusing the records of the case, the petitioners failed to come up with a strong evidence of neglect on the part of the MMDA in the enforcement of its duty to draw up a single ticketing system,” the appeals court said.