Thursday, September 11, 2014

SPA backs Salceda’s opposition to Alabang endpoint for provincial buses
By Connie B. Destura

LEGAZPI CITY, Sept. 10 (PNA) -- In a show of unity and expression of solid support to Albay Governor Joey Sarte Salceda, the Sangguniang Panlalawigan ng Albay (SPA) on Tuesday passed a resolution strongly opposing the implementation of an order issued by the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) limiting the entry of buses from Southern Tagalog and Bicol provinces in Manila and asking them to use the terminal in Alabang in Muntinlupa City,

Salceda had earlier expressed his dismay over the decision of the two agencies, saying it is highly disadvantageous to the commuting passengers from these areas, especially his province of Albay.

The SPA resolution, entitled “Defining the Metro Manila Endpoints of Provincial Public Utility Buses Originating from Southern Luzon, Bicol and the Visayas to Metro Manila as the Endpoints of their Current Authorized Routes and for Other Purposes" is authored by Board Member Neil Montallana and co-authored by all the members of the SPA, which ensured unanimous voting for its passing.

The move was prompted by the uproar created by residents coming from Southern Luzon, particularly from the Province of Albay, who regularly commute using buses and who said they would find more difficulties with the order.

Memorandum Circular 2014-15 of the MMDA and the LTFRB prevents the entry of provincial buses that were previously disembarking passengers in the Cubao terminal, in hopes of decongesting the worsening traffic in Metro Manila.

The SPA noted that the memorandum circular has caused severe inconveniences to travelers as they need to disembark at the Alabang station after being tired and weary from a long travel and are made to ride another public utility vehicle in going to their destination, resulting also in additional costs.

Earlier in the week, Salceda asked the Supreme Court to prevent the LTFRB and the MMDA from enforcing the memorandum circular. (PNA) LAP/FGS/CBD