Mayor Estrada firm on day-time truck ban decision
MANILA, Philippines — There will be no roadblocks for Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada in implementing the day-time truck ban even if truckers hold a strike in delivering the goods in and out of the capital.
In an interview with Inquirer Radio 990AM, Estrada said that the truckers were only thinking about themselves and they would not bat an eye on the effects of their action to the citizens of Manila.
“They are only thinking about themselves, and their pay,” Estrada said Wednesday afternoon. “They do not think about the obstruction that they cause on the citizens.”
Estrada said that he does not believe the truckers’ claims of a profit loss that the day-time truck ban caused them. The truck ban would only give the truckers a window from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
He added that all the timetables and windows regarding the day-time truck ban were heard in four meetings with Secretary Rogelio Singson of the Department of Public Works and Highways and Chairman Francis Tolentino of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority.
Bert Suansing, president of the Integrated Truckers Association, however took the contrary in Estrada’s claims.
He said that their losses, and the other sectors’ problems, were true and that the day-time truck ban was the culprit in their trade problems.
“The losses of other sectors have a connection to the transfer and delivery of goods, there are so much money lost since the goods are stranded on the ports,” Suansing said.
He added that it was not only businesses in Manila which were affected. The day-time truck ban, he said, ran over businesses in neighboring provinces in Central, Northern and Southern Luzon.
A similar truck-ban, Suansing claimed, was implemented in 1991 but was also scrapped as it did not benefit the businesses.
Estrada said that in their meetings with the truckers, the truck ban would be implemented from 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. and trucks would only be allowed to take the roads in the remaining hours.
He added that even if a truck was still in the road when the clock turns to 5 am, no charges would be filed as long as the truck is carrying cargo.
“No one would be apprehended, as long as they are going to the warehouses and they are carrying cargo,” Estrada said.
For the part of the truckers, Suansing said that they wish Estrada would give them a special lane that the trucks would occupy for the whole day, even during the truck-ban hours.
He added that the special lanes would be used to transport goods through North Luzon Expressway, South Luzon Expressway, and Cavite Expressway.