No lack of Good Samaritans for MMDA
During the first few months of the Duterte administration, there was no shortage of Good Samaritans taking interest in the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA), especially from the private sector.
According to MMDA officer in charge and general manager Tim Orbos, donors well aware of the agency’s lack of equipment have been stepping forward since July to donate various types of gear for the agency’s traffic enforcers, from raincoats and masks to handheld radios.
And they now also include a private citizen who offered to provide 6,000 MMDA employees with accident insurance coverage worth P40,000 each, Orbos told reporters in a recent interview.
This benefactor wishes to remain anonymous as the MMDA finalizes the details of the donation, which will take effect on Jan. 1 and will cover employees who “need it the most,” such as field enforcers, street sweepers, sidewalk clearing groups and staff of the Pasig River ferry service, Orbos said.
Earlier, Orbos said he and Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade were studying how the agency’s personnel can be provided with hazard pay, particularly the traffic enforcers, who he said risk life and limb manning the streets for a meager salary.
An entry-level traffic enforcer earns close to P11,000 monthly. The MMDA and the transportation department would continue to work out how they can get hazard pay in the coming year, Orbos added.
Recently, the MMDA also received 100 handheld radios sponsored by a company, costing about P10,000 per unit. “This just goes to show that the private sector is willing to lend a hand because they know that we’re ill-equipped,” Orbos said.
The MMDA official noted that donations such as the insurance coverage, radios, jackets, etc. were aboveboard as they were covered by proper documentation and given to the agency “for the work that is being done.”
Apart from the private sector, foreign local governments have also extended assistance to the MMDA.
The two ambulances and the two fire trucks committed by South Korea’s Daegu City are now on their way and are expected to arrive early next year, Orbos said.
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