THE SCENE IN MANILA

No light at the end of the tunnel

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THE tunnel under Jones Bridge in Manila’s Santa Cruz district sums up the government’s absolute neglect of commuters.

It has not been passable since cement was invented, with jeepneys crossing Recto Avenue Santa Cruz or Quiapo district and going to the South Harbor (Pier) having to take the bridge itself on their way to Aduana in the city’s Intramuros district–when the tunnel was precisely constructed to shorten the distance between two points.

Yes, the detour adds several precious minutes to the travel time of car-less people already suffering from pollution on Manila’s streets and non-existent traffic enforcement in the vicinity of the Post Office.

Why can’t jeepneys, as well as other public and private vehicles, pass through the tunnel?


It is always flooded, that’s why, and jeepney and other drivers won’t take the risk of their vehicle breaking down by braving the water there that must only be one-foot high!

Hello, the Low Countries solved flooding because the problem did not call for rocket scientists to solve it, but, in the Philippines, people overdo things, with nothing coming out of it.

Now, what supremely inept, hopelessly heartless, guiltlessly negligent agency of the national government is in charge of repairing the Jones Bridge tunnel, if at all any is responsible for making it passable?

Don’t ask because people at the top (no, even just the middle) at the Public Works department (if this is the one that should be doing the job) don’t ride jeepneys (they’re driven in chauffeured cars and tunnels are for the huddled masses).

If it is Manila City Hall that should find ways to make the Jones Bridge tunnel passable, then it should rush things up because the public-works ban would be imposed soon in line with the 2016 elections.

If neither the Public Works department nor City Hall is in charge, could it be the Intramuros Administration, the modern-day Katipuneros of Intramuros, the Commission on Elections or any of the other government units in the area?

To be sure, the next batch of bumbling bureaucrats-turned-aspirants for political posts in next year’s polls will promise the moon in exchange for your vote that will “inspire” them to make the tunnel passable.

In the meantime, don’t ever hope to see the light at the end of the Jones Bridge tunnel.

Why not?

Silly you, didn’t I tell you from the very beginning that it is not passable and never will be?

What you can do to get even–if that is even possible–is to cross Jones Bridge when you get there.

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1 Comment

  1. Gloria M. Kuizon on

    Thank you, Mr. Marinas.
    When will they restore Plaza Santa Cruz to the nice place it used to be?