Riding MRT? Pray and trust train works

TRANSPORTATION Secretary Arthur Tugade on Thursday sought prayers and trust from the public as the government took over the maintenance of the MRT 3 train system from its contractor. 

His department on Monday terminated its maintenance contract with Busan Universal Rail or BURI, which it has blamed for the system’s frequent breakdowns. 

“Help us, give us your trust and prayers because the MRT’s problems are widespread and deep,” Tugade said.

“Don’t expect miracles, but we will do everything we can.” 

Tugade said technical experts from other rail systems and some consultants were helping his department maintain MRT’s trains.

He said the government was open to employing BURI’S rank-and-file employees, but not its management that he had fired. 

The 13-station MRT 3 runs the length of Epifanio delos Santos Avenue and ferries about half-a-million commuters daily.

Tugade and Public Works Secretary Mark Villar on Thursday also inspected the extension of the North Luzon Expressway to Caloocan City that is under construction, and which is expected to ease Metro Manila’s traffic. 

The P10.5-billion NLEX-Harbor Link will provide access to the north expressway without passing through Edsa or the Balintawak toll plaza, according to the Department of Public Works and Highways.

 A big-ticket project in the “Build Build Build” infrastructure plan of the Duterte administration, the highway expected to be operational by March 2018, Villar said. 

Public Works has settled 92 percent of the right-of-way issues plaguing the project and is now working on the transfer of the affected residents. 

Villar said Public Works recently launched the mobile app “Infra Track” that allows the public to monitor the status of all public works in the country. 

Topics: Arthur Tugade , DoTR , MRT3 , BURI
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