Gatchalian pushes for 'toll holiday' along 'entire stretch' of NLEx amid RFID mess | Inquirer News

Gatchalian pushes for ‘toll holiday’ along ‘entire stretch’ of NLEx amid RFID mess

/ 03:02 PM December 14, 2020

Sherwin Gatchalian

Sen. Sherwin Gatchalian, (Albert Calvelo/Senate PRIB).

MANILA, Philippines — Senator Sherwin Gatchalian called for a “toll holiday” along the entire stretch of the North Luzon Expressway (NLEx) following glitches and heavy traffic being experienced by motorists in view of the implementation of the mandatory cashless toll payment scheme.

“From a concession agreement point-of-view. My view here is if your system is not working, why charge to consumers? Let’s implement the toll holiday in the entire stretch of NLEx because it’s not only Valenzuela experiencing [this] are also other LGUs experiencing this,” Gatchalian said in an interview over ABS-CBN News Channel.


“The operators are mandated to put perfect or near-perfect RFID (radio frequency identification) readers but if it’s not functioning, then why allow the motorists to experience the inconvenience of that imperfection?” he added.


Since last week, motorists are able to pass through the NLEx system within Valenzuela City after its local government suspended the business permit of NLEx Corporation for failing to address the heavy traffic that its cashless toll collection has been causing in the city.

“In other words, Valenzuela has to crack the whip because it’s already affecting businesses inside the city and the constituents are already complaining and this is an ongoing, very long problem already,” said the senator, whose brother is Valenzuela City Mayor Rex Gatchalian.

The Department of Transportation earlier ordered the full implementation of cashless toll collection at expressways and major toll roads in a bid to reduce physical contact in these areas as a measure against the spread of COVID-19.

“You have to plan for these things. We’re talking about close to 300,000 vehicles passing through NLEx every single day, so we’re talking about people all the way to Region 1,” Gatchalian said.

“Even some parts in Region 2, we’re talking the whole Central Luzon and Northern Luzon passing through that highway. So it’s not logistically that easy. You have to really plan it,” he added.

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TAGS: Nation, News, NLEX, toll holiday

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