Press Release
October 2, 2019


Sen. Grace Poe said she would press for the reinstatement of the P27-million fund for road safety programs, logistics and equipment, such as breathalyzers.

Poe made this declaration at the Wednesday hearing of the Public Services Committee, which tackled bills seeking to declare every third week of November as World Day of Remembrance for Road Crash Victims.

Department of Transportation (DOTr) Underscretary Mark Richmund De Leon told the panel that the 2020 proposed budget has no appropriation for road safety programs.

De Leon said the road safety fund is lodged in the Motor Vehicle Users Charge, which has been modified last year.

"Unfortunately, ni piso, walang pondo (for road safety)," he said.

Poe lamented the absence of allocation for road safety and vowed to ask her colleagues to allocate funds for the purchase of breathalyzer for the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA).

Breathalyzers are instruments that test the alcohol level of motorists.

Families of victims of car crash told the panel during the hearing that a number of cases involving vehicular accidents have been dismissed due to lack of evidence such as proof that the driver was drunk because there was no test conducted.

"'Yung 'pag test kung lasing ang isang driver, kasama 'yan sa road safety, pati yung drivers' education, at iba pang programa, kaya nga diumano mga P27 million ang budget na kailangan nila rito. Bukas, magkakaroon ng pagdinig ng DOTr para sa budget, gusto ko sanang ma-reinstate ang programa na ito," Poe said in a separate interview.

"It has to be funded, it has to be a priority kasi prevention and safety are paramount in the transportation system that we have...Tingin ko naman, magagawan ng paraan kasi buhay ang poprotektahan," Poe added.

Poe also presided over the committee's third technical working group (TWG), which is working with the DOTr, National Economic Development Authority (NEDA), Department of Public Works and Highways, MMDA and concerned stakeholders in coming up with a transportation master plan to alleviate the plight of commuters and motorists.

The committee earlier created a technical working group to review the government's transportation master plan and several proposals to address the traffic crisis.

Poe said NEDA informed them that the project list drafted in 2014 containing priority infrastructures is still being updated and completed. The list that will come from various implementing government agencies will form the Roadmap 2.

One specific measure which is not yet included in the draft Roadmap 2 and the 2014 Roadmap is the creation of a single traffic authority similar to the existing Inter-Agency Council for Traffic.

DOTr is asking Congress to create such body and will submit specific proposals on this, it was revealed during the TWG.

Poe said that NEDA also cited another plan called the Philippine Transportation System Master Plan ("Master Plan") that would include projects outside the Greater Capital Region. This is still being drafted and is already overdue but is expected to be completed this December.

News Latest News Feed