Officials Who Earn P100k a Month Should Ride Public Transport as per Lawmaker

Iligan City Representative Frederick Siao made a proposal for public officials who earn P100k monthly to take and ride public transport at least once (1)  week. This is for them to be able to come up with a better, more feasible, cost-effective solution to the traffic congestion woes and the commuting problems happening in and around the Metro.

Public Officials to Ride Public Transport Proposal, Coming Soon
This image was taken from The Philippine Star | PhilStar.com

He said that should this bill push to be signed into law, can drastically hasten things up as public officials would be able to experience what the normal people/commuters experience everyday.

Read: Future Projection of Railway Public Transport Around The Metro

Who will be part of this proposal to ride public transport?

According to Siao, public officials with a salary grade 26 which translates to about P100,000 per month would include Cabinet Secretaries, Congressmen, Mayors, and Bureau chiefs. He further explained that having this effective would clean up somewhere around 1,000 to 2,000 vehicles and cars off of the road.

This would be a big scrape-off of the current cars entering and exiting major and primary highways in the Metro and in Manila.

Read: The New Makati Subway and How it Can Change Transportation in Metro Manila

Is this proposal filed to the Congress?

Siao said that this specific proposal will be filed at the resumption of the Congress in November of this year. Do note that Siao is the Vice Chairman of the House of public order committee so he would be having this backed.

He said that the country’s public officials who earn a heap of salary needs to show empathy towards the commuters. He continued to say that they themselves need to experience it at least once (1) a week so that they can come up with a better and a much more effective solution to the problem.

Ipakita natin iyong empathy towards the riding public. Kailangan natin maranasan, especially high-ranking officials, kung paano pumila, makipagsiksikan gaya ng ordinaryong mamamayan. Mas makakapagbigay tayo ng magandang solusyon sa krisis ng transportation if you personally experience it.”

Read: Proposal of Food and Bus Terminal Plans by San Miguel, Aims to Decongest EDSA

In Translation: Le us show empathy towards the riding public. We need to experience it, especially high-ranking officials; things like queuing up to get a ride, fighting to fit to get a ride like how a normal citizen would do. This way, we would be able to provide a better solution to the transport crisis our country is currently experiencing.

House Bill 6195 or Public Servants Commuting via Public Transport Act

Back in August of last year, the same idea was already filed in the House of Representatives. However, this bill was filed by Neil Abayon, AANGAT TAYO Representative.

Read: Bicol PNR Project or the Manila to Bicol Railway Construction to Start This Year

In his version of the bill, both appointed and elected civil servants and public officials in both local and national governments from the division chief to department secretary would be required to ride public transport at least once (1) a month during weekday rush hours.

Moreover, he said that the ride can be to and from work and for official business. 

Read: Jobs For The Elderly Will be Allotted to Senior Citizens in Makati

HB 6195 also sets the economy class as the way of air transportation for all appointed and elected public officials and civil servants no matter what their ranks are.

Personal, first-hand experience to better solve the problem

Abayon said that first-hand personal experience would be the key in solving the traffic as they would have a better and a more “surreal” perspective on how they can solve the problem.

The personal, first-hand experience of riding public transportation will enable legislators to gain real world perspectives and inputs in aid of legislation.”

Read: LRT-1 Cavite Extension Construction to Start in April

The country is famous for its traffic; this infamous traffic has been poisoning the business and the jobs of the people. As a matter of fact, there are claims that almost all people wake up extra early just for them to be able to attend to their jobs on time.

Abayon added that these public officials frequently utilize government vehicles according to established rules and regulations. However, making them ride public transport on an occasional basis could actually be better grounds in solving the commuting crisis our countrymen claims to have.

Aside from their use of official government vehicles according to established rules and regulations, public servants should maintain their empathy with and compassion for the people by riding public transportation on occasion.”

Read: Proposal of a Car-Brand Coding Scheme in EDSA Has Been Submitted to Help Relieve Traffic in EDSA

Salvador Panelo tried public transport

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo tried commuting going to work last Friday, October 11th and took about four (4) hours to the Presidential Palace. This was a dare from the leftist groups to negate their claim that there is transport crisis in the country.

According to reports of Rappler, Mr. Panelo left the home of his child at around 5:15 in the morning. He then walked for 15 minutes going to the main road between Balete Drive and Gilmore for his first (1st) jeepney ride. Ultimately, he arrived at the Malacañang Palace 8:46 in the morning-the government opens at 8 A.M.

Read: Metro Manila Cable Car System, in its Final Stages

When asked, Panelo said that his 4-hour ride going to the Palace was just fine “Okay lang ‘yun” and concluded that there was no massive transport crisis. 

Losing profit

Traffic jams and traffic congestion impose not just a negative thing for the commuters. In fact, it has something to do more with the income or profit for Philippine businesses and the Philippine economy.

It was reported that the infamous traffic can result to around P3.5 billion in the daily losses to the Philippine economy. Meaning, if traffic did not exist, we could have made P3.5 billion more in a particular day.

Read: Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Wants to Cut the Number of Buses by Half

This is the reason why traffic is such a big issue when it comes to a country’s economy. Take Japan for instance; we haven’t heard of a traffic jam in Japan – and that is because of their optimum and cutting-edge public transportation.

Singapore, like Japan, does have premium public transport which is why they’ve converted all of their stress on how they can produce and earn more profit on a daily basis.

Singapore’s solution to traffic congestion

Back in 2013, the Singapore Business Review (SBR) has revealed their way on how they economically solve traffic congestion should they have any. In fact, Singapore reported that back in 2013, they had one of the highest road densities of developed nations with a ratio of 281 in terms of vehicles per kilometer.

They’ve revealed how they solve these types of concerns and if you want to read it, you can do so and click here.

What do you think about the lawmaker’s solution to the traffic and public transportation dilemma our country is currently experiencing? Could this be the most effective way in approaching this problem? Could public officials and lawmakers be able to come up with an efficient solution if they experience it first-hand?

Source: Philippine News Agency | ABS-CBN News | Rappler

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