Oliver Bugarin 8 0 0 5 min to read

MMDA: More traffic officers would be deployed in the TRO vs. NCAP conflict.

In response to a Supreme Court temporary restraining order (TRO) on the implementation of the no contact apprehension policy, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) announced on Wednesday that it would deploy more traffic personnel along major roads and step up physical apprehension of negligent drivers (NCAP).

On-the-ground arrests will continue, according to acting MMDA spokesperson and head of Legal Service Cris Saruca Jr.

To cover the locations where NCAP cameras are situated, such as EDSA, Commonwealth, Quezon Avenue, Roxas Boulevard, C-5, and Macapagal Boulevard, the deployment of traffic enforcers would be modified.

As we wait for the NCAP issue to be resolved definitively, “be assured that the MMDA would do its utmost to carry out its traffic management responsibility by physically apprehending and directing vehicles,” he stated.

He further stated that as the MMDA is not a respondent in the case, it would consult the Office of the Solicitor General (SolGen) for advice on its next course of action and whether it would need to intervene in the ongoing petition.

The high court issued a TRO to prevent the implementation of NCAP-related programs and regulations, and it states that any arrests made in accordance with the aforementioned policy and ordinances “will be forbidden pending further orders from the Court.”

The LTO and “any parties acting on its behalf” are prohibited from providing motorist information to any governmental entities, cities, or municipalities that are enforcing NCAP programs and ordinances by the order.

In the meanwhile, with the issuance of the TRO yesterday, the collecting of NCAP fines would likewise cease for those who had been detained by the policy.

Penalties that apply to arrests that took place before the TRO still apply.

As a result, it is prospective, and individuals who were in violation of the policy before the TRO was issued still have to pay their fines, according to Saruca. “The Supreme Court ordered that the TRO is effective immediately and shall continue until further notice,” she added.

Between January and August 24, the MMDA recorded apprehensions of approximately 107,000 NCAP.

Traffic sign disobedience, improper number coding, and improper loading and unloading are common infractions.

Saruca believed that motorists would behave responsibly even in the absence of the NCAP to maintain traffic flow and everyone’s safety on the road.

Talks between SolGen and LTO

The OSG stated that it is in discussions with the Land Transportation Office (LTO) to formulate the official stance of the government about the NCAP.

“Wala pang any correspondence from the MMDA or the relevant LGUs. Namin pag-uusapan sa OSG, kung ano ang dapat gawin. According to Solicitor General Menardo Guevarra, “We submitted our opinion on the petition yesterday on behalf of the LTO, but the SC had already issued the TRO.

As it is their NCAP ordinances that are in dispute, the respondent LGUs are expected to be represented by their respective legal offices in this lawsuit, he continued.

The petition was submitted to the court earlier this month by the transportation organizations Kilusan sa Pagbabago ng Industriya ng Transportasyon Inc., Pasang Masda, Alliance of Transport Operators and Drivers Association of the Philippines, and Alliance of Concerned Transport Organizations.

Manila, Quezon City, Valenzuela, Paraaque City, Muntinlupa City, and LTO are named in the lawsuit.

The groups said in a 47-page appeal that a system that employs closed-circuit video cameras puts drivers “under constant threat of being arbitrarily detained remotely and issued notices of violation for supposed traffic infractions committed without any contact whatsoever.”

Cities that have fully implemented NCAP have reported reductions in traffic congestion brought on by stopped cars, irresponsible driving, and dangerous driving practices.


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