Palace says Aquino still believes in Abaya, problems in MRT ‘systemic’
MANILA, Philippines― President Benigno Aquino III still believes that Department of Transportation and Communications Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya could solve the problems plaguing the Metro Rail Transit 3 (MRT 3), a Malacañang spokesman said Tuesday.
In a press briefing, Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio “Sonny” Coloma Jr. said Abaya is still being favored by the president.
The Palace pointed out that the problems faced by the railway system are systemic and that the MRT 3 is also being managed by a private corporation and two government financial institutions.
“Unawain natin na systemic din ‘yung suliranin. Nagkaroon ng corporate aspect ‘yan. Mayroong private group na in charge dati sa―na sangkot or participating in the ownership and management of MRT 3,” Coloma said.
(We should understand that the problem is systemic. It has a corporate aspect. There is a private group in charge or participating in the ownership and management of MRT 3.)
Coloma added the temporary restraining order (TRO) filed by the Metro Rail Transit Corporation (MRTC) prevented the acquisition of new additional coaches of the MRT.
He also said the government recognizes the problems of the MRT 3 are “serious” and that it is doing its best to ensure the safety of the riding public.
The palace official added it welcomes the Senate probe on the problems of the MRT 3 saying that senators could craft laws to address these problems.
“Batid natin na seryoso ang mga suliranin. Ang pangunahing konsiderasyon ay ang kanilang kaligtasan. Kaya’t makatitiyak ang ating mga mamamayan na sinisikap ng pamahalaang gawin ang nararapat at mainam din na dininig ng Senado ang mga suliraning ito,” Coloma said.
(We recognize that these problems [of the MRT 3] are serious. Our primary consideration is safety, that’s why we assure the public that the government is doing what it sees is right and it is good that the Senate conducted a hearing to investigate on the problems [of the MRT 3].)
A probe was conducted by the Senate headed by Senator Grace Poe to investigate on what happened when an MRT 3 train overshot the tracks at Taft Avenue station last August 13 and injured 38 passengers.
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