About 2,000 more buses are set to join the daily commute Filipinos make in Metro Manila. These are not new city buses but rather provincial buses that have been allowed back into city streets by a new memorandum from the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB).
MMDA Chair Francis Tolentino was unaware of this development and has since warned the public about the repercussions it will have on the current traffic situation.
“I was not furnished [with] an official copy of the memorandum circular and was also [not] consulted prior to its release,” said the MMDA chairman.
Released on July 9, 2014, Memorandum Circular No. 10 Series of 2014 is being defended on the other hand by LTFRB Chairman Winston M. Ginez saying that the “the move of LTFRB is to rationalize routes of provincial buses that were not updated in the last 20 years.”
Chairman Tolentino added that his agency along with city mayors that make up the Metro Manila Council should have been advised and consulted regarding this matter.
This move, along with the current DPWH and Maynilad projects would certainly make the traffic situation in Metro Manila go from ‘bad to worse,’ said Tolentino.
This LTFRB memo circumvents Pnoy’s Executive Order No. 67 Series of 2012 that mandates that provincial buses collect themselves in a ‘centralized, intermodal and integrated bus terminal system at the fringes of Metro Manila,’ which in this case is the Southwest Integrated Provincial Transport Terminal (SWIPTT) along Coastal Road in Parañaque City.