Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto on Friday proposed to increase the 2020 appropriations of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) for the hiring of more traffic management personnel to address the worsening road traffic in the metropolis.
In a statement, Recto said the MMDA needs “round-the-clock and rain-or-shine” supervision of traffic personnel with the surge in the number of vehicles–an estimated 2.8 million vehicles–in major roads and critical intersections in the metropolis.
Recto cited that the MMDA is 5,000 short of the 7,000-field staff it needs.
“The best solution is to increase the funds it receives from the national government through the General Appropriations Act,” Recto said.
The Senate leader said the upcoming hearing of the MMDA 2020 budget “would be a good time to discuss how its budget can be used efficiently, including funding new personnel items.”
He noted that aside from hiring more personnel, the MMDA also has other projects it prioritizes such as flood control, dredging operations of major esteros, traffic light systems, and emergency response, among others.
Citing data from the Commission on Audit, Recto said the MMDA has 2,955 permanent employees, seven presidential appointees, 18 co-terminus employees, 32 consultants, and 7,077 casual, temporary, project-based and “job order” employees.
“Ilan na ba ang dapat i-regularize, lalo na ‘yung mga frontline workers? Ano naman ‘yung mga benepisyong dapat ibigay doon sa mga naaarawan, nauulanan, at naalikabukan sa kalsada? (How many workers should be regularized, most especially the frontline workers? What harm would it do to grant benefits for those who work hard amid the rain, shine, or dust?),” Recto said.