TRANSPORTATION Undersecretary for Rails Cesar Chavez has tendered his “irrevocable” resignation amid the problems that have plagued the Metro Rail Transit-3 (MRT-3).
Chavez cited “delicadeza” (a sense of propriety) as his reason for stepping down from his post.
“I hope the President understands that in the light of recent events involving the MRT-3 System, simple sense of delicadeza which I have adhered to throughout my professional life gives me no choice but to resign from my said position,” Chavez said in his resignation letter addressed to President Rodrigo Duterte.
“It is also my intent and hope that my resignation provides opportunity for the appointment of [a]person better qualified to perform the duties and responsibilities of the subject office,” Chavez said in a live broadcast of his press conference on Thursday.
In an interview, Chavez said that the MRT-3 would need a team that could decide quickly.
“Baka importante magkaroon ng bagong team na workable [It may be important to have a team that is workable],” Chavez said.
He said that he has been doing the job for one year and a month, but may not be able to deliver what is required as soon as possible.
“Ang tao naghihintay ng mas mabilis na resulta [People are waiting for quick results],” Chavez said.
Chavez recommended the termination of the contract of MRT-3 with maintenance provider Busan Universal Rail Inc. (BURI). The government is currently handling the maintenance of the train system.
Duterte appointed Chavez undersecretary for rails and toll roads of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) on February 28, 2016 replacing Noel Kintanar who stepped down on November 29, 2016 amid allegations of conflict of interest.
Before his appointment to the DOTr, Chavez was deputy administrator of the Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA), director, member of the Board of Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO), chairman and chief executive officer of the National Youth Commission, chief executive officer of the Presidential Council for Youth Affairs, and assistant general manager for planning at the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA).
Chavez previously served as assistant vice president at the Manila Broadcasting Company.
He was also president and vice chairman of the Board at the University of Caloocan City.
He studied at the Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government, and the National Defense College of the Philippines.
Chavez, who hails from Pugay, San Jose, Camarines Sur, is a partymate of Duterte at the Partido Demoktratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban). KAROL JOSEPH LUCENA