DPWH confident Makati to Cubao trip in 5 minutes possible by December
Robie de Guzman • August 7, 2019 • 736
MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) on Wednesday expressed confidence that it will be able to achieve President Rodrigo Duterte’s target of reducing the travel time from Cubao in Quezon City to Makati City to five minutes by December.
There are only four months left before the president’s deadline which was issued early this year but the DPWH said the shortened travel time will be made possible through a “combination” of infrastructure projects in Metro Manila seen to be completed this year.
When asked which projects will help shorten the drive, Anna Mae Lamentillo, who heads the DPWH’s Build, Build, Build Interagency Committee, admitted there is no singular way to do it.
She added that a bigger announcement will be made on how the target will be achieved.
“There is no singular strategy for this program pero ayaw kong ma-preempt ang (but I don’t want to preempt the) formal announcement for this project. I hope we can wait for the formal announcement on how this will be done,” she told reporters during a Malacañang press briefing.
Some of the projects under the Duterte administration’s infrastructure program are designed to reduce road traffic and travel time especially in Metro Manila’s major thoroughfares, Edsa and C5.
These include the Metro Manila Skyway Project, North Luzon Expressway Harbor Link, C5 South Link, and the NLEx-SLEx Connector Road which are seen to offer access and alternate routes for motorists.
Also being constructed are bridges seen to link business hubs, as well as railway projects that are envisioned to reduce the travel time and ease road congestions.
DPWH Secretary Mark Villar earlier said that some of the projects are expected to be completed within this year
“What we have right now is a master plan that will effectively decongest Edsa and C5 by about 300,000 vehicles in total,” Lamentillo said.
Solving traffic woes in Edsa is one of Duterte’s promises that is yet to be fulfilled. He previously asked Congress to grant him emergency powers to solve the problem but to no avail.
In his fourth State of the Nation Address, Duterte ordered local governments to clear public roads being used for private ends.
The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has responded to the chief executive’s order by directing mayors to conduct a 60-day operation to clear roads of illegal vendors and structures obstructing sidewalks. (with details form Rosalie Coz)
After its postponement on January 22, the one-on-one interview with President Rodrigo Duterte will push through on Tuesday (January 28), said Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo on Monday.
The January 22 schedule for the one-on-one interview was postponed due to “pressing family matters”.
“Due to pressing matters, the tête-à-tête Part 2 of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and Chief Presidential Legal Counsel and Presidential Spokesperson Salvador S. Panelo has been moved to January 28, 2020 at the Rizal Hall, Malacañan Palace at 5:00 p.m.,” a previous media advisory read.
This will be the President’s second têtê-a-têtê. The first televised interview was held last September 2018.—AAC (with reports from Rosalie Coz)
MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang confirmed Friday that the Philippines has started the process of terminating the Visiting Forces Agreement with the United States, a day after President Rodrigo Duterte threatened to end the deal if it does not reverse the cancellation of Senator Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa’s visa.
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the president issued the termination order Thursday night despite giving a month for the US to restore the senator’s visa.
Panelo said the order has already been relayed to Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. as well as Philippine Ambassador to the US Jose Manuel Romualdez.
“I just talked with Secretary Teddy Boy Locsin, and he said that he will start with the process and he called up already the vice chair and they talked, and Ambassador Romualdez has already been informed, I was also talking to him earlier,” he said.
In a tweet on Friday, Locsin confirmed he and Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana have taken the first step in ending the 1998 deal with the US government.
Locsin sits as the chairperson of the Commission on Visiting Forces while Lorenzana serves as vice chairman.
“Del Lorenzana and I- as Vice and Chair of USVFA – are starting the process of terminating it by first contacting the Senate because it is a treaty on our side, an executive agreement on the US side. I’m leaving for Washington on a totally unrelated matter,” he wrote on his Twitter account.
Lorenzana, for his part, refrained from commenting into Duterte’s latest pronouncement.
“Will study it first,” he said in a message to reporters. “No comment muna. Too soon to comment.”
The VFA is a bilateral accord between Washington and Manila that came into force in 1999. It outlines the guidelines about the treatment of their troops when visiting the US or the Philippines. It includes provisions on visa and passport policies for US troops and the American government’s right to retain jurisdiction over its personnel, among others.
The deal may be terminated by either of the two countries by writing to the other party signifying their intent to end the agreement. Its expiration will come 180 days from the date of notification. – RRD (with details from Correspondents Rosalie Coz & Lea Ylagan)
MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte said he has decided to reject the invitation of United States President Donald Trump to attend the US-Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit to be held in Las Vegas this March.
Duterte announced his decision during an interview with Russian International Television Network RT.
“I just received an invitation to go to the United States together with the ASEAN leaders. I haven’t been to the States. I was invited by [former US President Barack] Obama a while back. But I did not go,” he said in a video posted on Thursday.
When asked if he will attend the upcoming summit between the US and ASEAN, Duterte replied with: “No, no.”
During the interview, the president recalled the time when Obama criticized him and his campaign against illegal drugs.
“One time when I was being criticized by Obama in a press conference, he should have realized that I’m also the head of a sovereign state. He should have criticized me in the proper venue,” he said, referring to a September 2016 press conference where Obama urged Duterte to conduct his campaign “the right way.”
The president said Obama’s move to castigate him in a press briefing got him “so mad” and prompted him to curse the former president.
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo earlier said that the chief executive is “still pondering” on whether he would accept Trump’s invitation as he is mindful of the possibility of getting barred from entering the US since he doesn’t have a visa, and making some American senators “unhappy” seeing him there. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)
UNTV is a major TV broadcast network with 24-hour programming. An Ultra High Frequency station with strong brand content that appeal to everyone, UNTV is one of the most trusted and successful Philippine networks that guarantees wholesome and quality viewing experience.