The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) on Thursday intensified its clean up drive in areas affected by widespread flooding.
MMDA General Manager Corazon Jimenez said the agency’s Metro Parkways Clearing Group and the local government of Manila have been working since Monday to remove the garbage in the flooded areas .
She said the group had so far hauled 15 truckloads of garbage left by the floods along Roxas Boulevard and the Manila Bay coastline.
The garbage was composed mostly of plastic items and pieces of wood.
Jimenez called on the public to help the government by not throwing their trash in the waterways .
Proper segregation will go a long way in reducing the tons of garbage in the waterways that also clogs pumping stations.
MMDA Metro Parkway Clearing Group Chief Francis Martinez said the volume of garbage collected this year is lower compared to the more than 150 truckloads of trash collected last year.
He said the garbage collected came from areas around the Manila Bay like Parañaque, Pasay, Manila and Navotas and as far as the provinces of Cavite, Bulacan and Bataan which were also flooded.
MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino said recovering from this year’s monsoon rain will take longer.
“This year’s habagat has intermitent intervals. The recovery time may take longer,” he said.
Tolentino said only parts of Muntinlupa and the Camanava (Caloocan, Malabon, Navotas and Valenzuela) area remain flooded as of Thursday.
At the same time, he asked the Intramuros Administration (IA) to pump floodwater from the streets to the Pasig River after the Lagusnilad underpass was submerged at the height of the monsoon rains.
He said he learned that the Club Intramuros was discharging excess water from the golf course to P. Burgos and Victoria Streets.
“This discharge of water from the golf course to the Lagusnilad Underpass and P. Burgos Street, Victoria Street has caused and continue to cause our deflooding efforts to be greatly delayed, if not caused the area to remain flooded despite all our pumping efforts,” Tolentino said.
The MMDA has eight pump trucks helping the Manila city government siphon the water from Lagusnilad.
RITCHIE A. HORARIO