The Department of Transportation said it wants to terminate the P3.8 billion contract of Busan Universal Rail Inc. (BURI) as maintenance provider of the Metro Rail Transit-3.
“The position of the Department of Transportation is it is a must to terminate the contract,” Transport Undersecretary for rails and toll roads Cesar Chavez said during a hearing of the Senate Committee on Public Services on Tuesday.
“If the maintenance contract is not terminated, we will continue to press BURI on spare parts,” Chavez said.
BURI has not complied with the general overhaul contract, the DoTr official claimed. The company should have overhauled 17 cars by now, but has not delivered even a single coach, he said.
Chavez said the DoTr has reduced its monthly payment to BURI by P15.8-million due to the absence of proof of purchase of capital spare parts. BURI demanded a lump sum payment of P44-million monthly maintenance bill.
However, Chavez said the contract termination would have to undergo due process that would require a maintenance transition team.
The department is considering placing the MRT-3 under the management of Light Rail Transit Authority, the operator of LRT-2, and privatize the mass rail transit system.
The Philippine National Railways, LRT-1 and the anticipated Mindanao Railway System have their respective boards, but not MRT-3.
“Many problems would have been prevented if MRT-3 was run by the LRTA Board,” Chavez said.
He added that he has asked for help from the LRTA a number of times on how to solve the glitches hounding the MRT-3, but did not elaborate.