The Department of Transportation (DOTr) maintained that there is no transportation crisis in the country but there are transport issues that are being addressed by the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte.
In a media statement on Wednesday, Secretary Arthur Tugade said “there is no transportation crisis. There are transportation issues and problems.”
In response to criticisms that the country faces a “mass transport crisis” due to recent problems in the Light Rail Transit Line 2 (LRT-2), the DOTr said the Philippines is 20 years behind in terms of transport infrastructure.
“This is precisely the reason why since the beginning, the DOTr, under the Duterte administration, has been employing a catch-up plan to expedite the construction and operationalization of various transport infrastructure projects,” a DOTr statement read on Tuesday.
The infrastructure projects under construction are the Metro Manila Subway, Metro Rail Transit Line 7 (MRT-7), Light Rail Transit Line 1 (LRT-1) Cavite Extension, LRT-2 East Extension, Philippine National Railways (PNR) Clark Phase 1, Common Station, PNR Calamba, PNR Bicol, LRT-2 West Extension, Subic-Clark Railway, and the Mindanao Railway.
The DOTr said it has so far completed 64 airport projects nationwide with 133 more ongoing, one land port built and in operation, and completed 222 commercial and tourism port projects with another 122 underway.
The department said improvements in transportation will be gradually experienced as the government addresses the 20-year infrastructure backlog.
Last Oct. 3, tripped power transformers ignited a fire in the LRT-2, resulting in a four-day suspension of the entire rail line and a 9-month suspension of service of the Anonas, Katipunan, and Santolan stations. (PNA)