Various transport groups support MMDA’s deployment of body cams
The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) announced that they had received all-out support from various transport stakeholders, automobile and motorcycle groups, as well as the public transport sector and other law enforcement agencies to use body-worn cameras.
For the MMDA, this will help with traffic management and enforcement operations to help promote transparency in carrying out apprehensions of traffic violators.
MMDA Acting Chairman, Atty. Don Artes, together with key agency officials, presented the drafted rules on the use of body-worn cameras for traffic enforcers and procedures when flagging down motorists.
The procedure presented details on what traffic enforcers should say when motorists object to being recorded and if motorists invoke their right to privacy.
“We want to hear the comments and suggestions of the stakeholders before its full implementation,” said Artes.
Artes said stakeholders' comments will be consolidated and presented to the Metro Manila Council (MMC), the governing and policy-making body of the MMDA, whose members are the 17 Metro Manila mayors.
Obet Martin, Pangkalahatang Sanggunian Manila & Suburbs Drivers Association (PASANGMASDA) national president, lauded Artes' leadership and expressed appreciation for the MMDA’s action. They also called for the inclusion of traffic education in the school curriculum.
Artes said the body-worn cameras with video and audio recording features, will protect both the traffic enforcers and the motorists being apprehended.
“The use of body-worn cameras will prevent traffic enforcers from taking bribes and motorists [from] offering bribes since the Metrobase will record the apprehension process. The footage may serve as evidence,” said Artes.
Artes said the body-worn cameras, designed to capture and record the entire conduct of the operation, are similar to gadgets used in the United Kingdom. The devices have 6 to 8 hours of battery life.
During the initial run, 120 body cameras will be distributed to traffic enforcers who are authorized to issue citation tickets to traffic violators.