Ex-MMDA chair: ‘Build, Build, Build’ not totally a failure, but ‘kind of slow’
MANILA, Philippines — The “Build, Build, Build” infrastructure program of the Duterte administration is not totally a failure but is “kind of slow,” former Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) chair and Marikina City Rep. Bayani Fernando said Monday.
“Not totally,” Fernando said when asked if the program is a “failure” during an interview with ANC Headstart. “But I would say, we’re really kind of slow.”
Fernando suggested that the government should work first on the “detailed engineering” of infrastructure projects before looking for funds to finance them.
“Before looking for the money to finance the project, let’s do the work of making the detailed engineering. Then after that, we can now get an accurate estimate of cost then let’s start looking for the money,” Fernando said.
“And if we have that, we are sure of how much we need. And then the decision-makers can now make their decisions fast because they have actual proof, or they have done the preliminaries. There’s a basis for their decision. It’s a problem of decisions,” he added.
With only nine out of 75 flagship projects under construction, Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon earlier blasted the program as a “dismal failure.”
Drilon also lamented the infrastructure program’s “problem of underspending, the problem of the bureaucracy not being able to respond, the problem of ill-advised projects.”
Malacañang, however, dismissed Drilon’s remark as baseless and told the opposition senator to instead “look at the administration you previously belonged.”
Palace spokesman Salvador Panelo added there are already 35 projects under construction while 32 more are set to begin in six to eight months.