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Recto wants MMDA to prioritize hiring of more personnel

/ 01:37 PM August 16, 2019
Recto wants MMDA to prioritize hiring of more personnel

Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto. PHOTO from Ralph Recto office

MANILA, Philippines—Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto said Friday that hiring more Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) traffic management personnel should be made a priority to help arrest the worsening road traffic in Metro Manila.

Due to the continuous surge in the number of vehicles, major roads and critical intersections in the capital region now require “round-the-clock and rain-or-shine” supervision of MMDA personnel, Recto said in a statement.

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“MMDA needs an active night brigade,” he stressed.

The Senate President Pro Tempore, second highest rank official in the Senate, pointed out that in Metro Manila alone, some 11,530 vehicles were being registered monthly. This was on top of the vehicles from nearby provinces that are plying around Metro Manila roads.

Another reason to hire more MMDA traffic personnel is the increasing number of vehicular accidents, which in 2017 soared to 110,025 reported cases, Recto said. 

The senator also suggested that the MMDA “must be allowed to tap a portion of the P168 million it collects in traffic and littering fines annually—specifically for the hiring of more personnel.”

But the best solution, according to Recto, is to increase the funds MMDA receives from the national government through the General Appropriations Act.

In 2018, the MMDA was given P3.688 billion in that year’s national budget. It also received P3.636 billion in mandatory contributions from its member towns and cities.

After the Commission on Audit (COA) flagged MMDA’s failure to “obligate” P1.2 billion of its 2018 appropriations, Recto said the coming Senate hearing of its 2020 budget “would be a good time to discuss how its budget can be used efficiently, including funding new personnel items.” /jpv

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