Provincial bus ban on Edsa faces 3rd opposition at SC
MANILA, Philippines — The controversial provincial bus ban policy on Edsa faced its third opposition before the Supreme Court (SC) after Bayan Muna representatives filed a temporary restraining order against the scheme Friday.
Bayan Muna chair Neri Colmenares and members of the House Makabayan bloc have asked the High Tribunal to stop and permanently void the regulation that bans provincial buses from plying along the major thoroughfare and moves provincial buses’ loading and unloading zone to the two integrated terminals in Santa Rosa, Laguna for those coming from the south, and Valenzuela City for those from the north.
Regulation No. 19-002 Series of 2019 of the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and the Metro Manila Council also asks local government units to revoke or stop the issuance of business permits to provincial bus terminals along Edsa. Ako Bicol Reps. Ronald Ang and Alfredo Garbin Jr., and Albay 2nd District Rep. Joey Salceda had also lodged similar petitions.
Colmenares and his co-petitioners said the MMDA “exceeded its powers” when it issued the regulation “because it does not possess legislative nor police powers.”
They said Republic Act No. 7924 (An Act Creating the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority, Defining its Powers and Functions, Providing Funding Therefor and For Other Purposes) “did not grant the MMDA with police power, nor legislative power, and that all of MMDA’s functions are administrative in nature.” The policy also “fails the test of a valid police power measure,” they added.
Considering that MMDA is not equipped with police and legislative powers, the petitioners further argued that it “verily violates the due process rights not just of the affected buses but also the affected public.”
MMDA’s failure to conduct consultations with the affected public and study options other than banning provincial buses also “violates equal protection rights,” they added.
The dry run of the policy started on April 23, but MMDA later suspended it on May 6, with MMDA traffic chief Col. Edison “Bong” Nebrija admitting it still needs further review and studies. (Editor: Jonathan P. Vicente)
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