Metro Manila traffic enforcers can still go after violators – MMDA

Metro Manila traffic enforcers can still go after violators – MMDA

By: - Reporter / @JeromeAningINQ
/ 05:42 AM March 07, 2024

Metropolitan Manila Development Authority Chairman Romando Artes

Metropolitan Manila Development Authority Chairman Romando Artes (Photo by ARNEL TACSON Arnel Tacson/

The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) said on Wednesday that traffic enforcers of local government units (LGUs) in the National Capital Region may keep on apprehending and issuing tickets to traffic violators since a Supreme Court decision prohibiting them from doing so was not yet final and executory.

“To our motorist countrymen, if you will be apprehended by local traffic enforcers, don’t argue with them and don’t argue that they are prohibited from apprehending and issuing a ticket because it (the decision) is not yet final and executory,” MMDA acting Chair Romando “Don” Artes said at a press briefing held at the MMDA head office in Pasig City.


The MMDA chief who is also a lawyer, however, called the high tribunal’s decision “favorable” to the agency as it recognizes the MMDA’s power to regulate traffic and pass legislation.


“What is important is the recognition that the MMDA, through the Metro Manila Council (MMC), has the power to pass resolutions regarding traffic. In effect, the earlier decision saying that we (MMDA) have no legislative powers was reversed. The court is saying in this decision that we do have them in so far as traffic regulations are concerned,” he said.

Options to be studied

According to him, he will convene the members of the MMC and their legal officers to discuss the implications of the high court’s decision and explore available options, including the filing of a motion for reconsideration. The Office of the Solicitor General, which represented the MMDA in the case, will also be consulted.

“We have to study the implications of the Supreme Court decision not only [on] the individual respondents but its impact [on] traffic in Metro Manila,” Artes added.

In a decision dated July 11, 2023, but posted only on its website on Monday, the high court said the Metro Manila Traffic Code, which encompasses the MMDA’s single ticketing system (STS) prevails over the traffic ordinances of local governments. As a result, local traffic enforcers cannot confiscate driver’s licenses and issue traffic violation tickets unless duly deputized by the MMDA.

In the meantime, Artes said the MMDA should be prepared should the high court’s decision become final and executory.

“Rest assured, we will study and plan for this, particularly the deputization of local traffic enforcers in Metro Manila, which is needed for them to issue citation tickets. We will craft the guidelines,” he added.


Lacking in manpower

Artes admitted that the agency lacked the manpower to manage traffic all over Metro Manila. “We need the local traffic enforcers, especially on inner roads,” he said.

Efforts should also be made to address “gaps” in the Metro Manila Traffic Code and LGUs’ traffic ordinances, he stressed. Should there be a need to deputize local traffic enforcers, Artes said that standards should be set to ensure that they were qualified. He also rejected the idea of “indiscriminate deputization.”

READ: LGUs may still issue violation tickets MMDA reminds motorists

READ: SC voids Metro Manila LGUs’ issuance of traffic violation tickets

The STS has already been rolled out in 15 Metro Manila LGUs, except for the cities of Marikina and Malabon.

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The STS, through the establishment of the Metro Manila Traffic Code of 2023, provides for a system of interconnectivity among government agencies involved in transport and traffic management in the metropolis with harmonized fines and penalties.

TAGS: Metropolitan Manilal Development Authority, traffic violators

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