Noynoy Aquino must still be groping for sound talking points for his final State of the Nation Address (SONA) even as he desperately searches for a viable administration standard-bearer for the upcoming elections.
Well, the bewildered Noynoy might as well take the suggestion of Senate president Franklin Drilon to address in his speech the problem of public transportation, particularly the Metro Rail Transit (MRT).
Come to think of it, the horrible state of the MRT may be likened to the sorry state of the nation, which politicians promised to improve but have failed to fulfill.
So, Drilon made sense in saying that Noynoy must take a “firm executive action” to alleviate the plight of MRT commuters.
“Let’s face it, the MRT-3 is a disappointment. I feel the frustration of our people,” Drilon said.
I agree with the senator. The public would like to hear on Monday what the President intends to do in the remaining months about the MRT commuters’ suffering.
Just as Drilon made the call Wednesday, the MRT broke down for the nth time. Hundreds of passengers were again stranded in the railway.
In recent years, the MRT’s trains have been plagued by mechanical and technical problems, which Senator Grace Poe’s committee on transport investigated last year.
The senator personally experienced the kilometric queues at the MRT stations and the overcrowded train coaches.
MRT got worse and worse since the administration of former transport secretary Mar Roxas, who had a hand in MRT’s maintenance contract.
The train service has extremely deteriorated that operating them already poses dangers to the public. They’ve been reduced to “rolling coffins.”
Not one MRT train is in good running condition and the entire fleet must be replaced with new ones.
But, instead of providing sound maintenance and needed repair, corrupt officials and their cronies have exploited and made the MRT a milking cow.
Senator Poe, as much as everyone does, would like to hear from the horse’s mouth when the new “Ballsy trains” from Czechoslovakia are going to arrive.
Commuters demand PNR services
Metro commuters have also denounced the failure of the transport authorities to resume the train services of the Philippine National Railways (PNR).
Tens of thousands of commuters, including workers and students, that used to ride the PNR commuter trains daily between the Tutuban, Manila and Calamba, Laguna were affected when service was suspended due to a train accident two months ago.
Riding the trains have proven to be more efficient and less costly for poor commuters.
People are asking why the concerned agencies have been unable to complete the needed repairs when billions of pesos are being spent on dubious road projects.
This problem with the PNR merely shows how helpless the DOTC is under the administration of Sec. Joseph Emilio Abaya.