Palace hopes proposed emergency powers will pass in 18th Congress

Robie de Guzman

Malacañang on Monday expressed hope that the Duterte administration’s proposed emergency powers to solve the perennial traffic problems in Metro Manila will be approved in the next Congress.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the government remains hopeful that the proposal will hurdle the 18th Congress to ease the travel of commuters.

“Congress knows what is the problem so it should know what to do to respond to a situation. After all, they are there, just like the President, to serve the Filipino people and that includes putting the riding public in a convenient situation,” Panelo said in a Palace news briefing.

The measure seeking to grant President Duterte with emergency powers to combat traffic in Edsa, one of the country’s major thoroughfares, was stalled in the 17th Congress due to various issues.

Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade earlier hinted that the bill may be given another shot in the next Congress.

President Duterte earlier vowed to reduce the travel time from Cubao in Quezon City to Makati to five minutes by December this year.

However, Panelo did not elaborate on the chief executive’s plan.

 “Surprise! He has something on his sleeves,” he said. (with details from Rosalie Coz)

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