MMDA: Towing of illegally parked vehicles to be enforced equally

MANILA-- The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) reiterated Tuesday it will not tolerate illegal parking of vehicles and will enforce its clearing operations with no special privileges to anyone.

MMDA supervising officer for operations Bong Nebrija issued this statement following the towing of the vehicle of actress Aiko Melendez for illegal parking during its road clearing operations in Quezon City Tuesday morning.

We reiterate that our towing operations will be applied equally whether rich or poor alike, Nebrija said in an interview with reporters.

Nebrija said that the actress' Mitsubishi Pajero sports utility vehicle (SUV) was illegally parked along Mother Ignacia corner Scout Borromeo.

The SUV was towed as it was parked in a tow away zone and was brought to its ULTRA impounding area in Pasig City.

Asked if Melendez was in the vehicle when the incident happened, Nebrija said he was unaware as he has not overseen the operations.

He said the actress was able to secure a barangay permit for taping of a television program but not for parking the vehicle.

The camp of Melendez must pay a towing fee depending on the distance. The MMDA imposes a fine of PHP 1,500 for the first 4 kilometers to light vehicles. An additional charge of PHP 200 shall be charged for succeeding kilometers from place of towing to the impounded area.

The MMDA has earlier stated that it will intensify its clearing operations in heavily congested areas in Metro Manila to further improve the traffic situation.

MMDA General Manager and Officer in Charge Thomas Orbos said they are now targeting Balintawak, Cubao, Quiapo, Alabang, Monumento and Divisoria, which are known traffic choke points in the metropolis.

The agency intends to start towing and impounding illegally parked vehicles in these areas before December this year.

It is also continuing its operations to clear the six-kilometer stretch of the Roxas Boulevard service road from Baclaran to TM Kalaw following their successful clearing of illegal structures and terminals at the Baclaran area.

Motorists can now use the four lanes of the service road from Vito Cruz up to TM Kalaw with all the road obstructions and structures cleared.

Orbos attributed the successful clearing operations in Baclaran to a series of coordination and consultations with various stakeholders in the area, including the barangays and local chief executives concerned, to prevent any untoward incident and ensure that clearing operations would be smooth.

The clearing of major road networks and inner streets in Metro Manila complements the agency's implementation of various traffic schemes, such as the number coding scheme, in a bid to improve the notorious traffic congestion in the metropolis.

Source: Philippines News Agency