President Rodrigo Duterte has blamed an “insolent lady” for not giving him emergency powers to solve the heavy traffic on EDSA, and then added the major artery should be left “to rot.”
“Here comes a lady, I call her insolent. It’s good to be honest, it’s good to be a crusading public official, no doubt about it, you will be appreciated. But if you go too far and you think all elected public officials are corrupt, never mind,” President Duterte said in his speech Wednesday.
“Let EDSA rot there,” said Duterte, who was in Romblon to lead the inauguration of a solar project in the province.
He did not name the “insolent lady” who supposedly hindered government efforts to get the funding to fix the traffic problem on EDSA.
But Duterte had previously cited Senator Grace Poe, who heads the Senate committee on public services, for her refusal to grant emergency powers to the President.
“[Transportation Secretary Arthur] Tugade said: ‘We need to borrow for EDSA because we need money to move just one stall there,’” Duterte said.
“They ask for emergency powers.”
In his first State of the Nation Address, Duterte asked Congress for emergency powers to solve the heavy traffic in the major thoroughfare.
Poe had previously said there had to be a clear list of projects to be implemented and the transparency to carry them out, and the appointment of a “capable” traffic czar to lead the effort.
Three years later, no emergency powers have been granted to solve the traffic problem on EDSA.
Government agencies have been previously criticized for implementing a provincial bus ban and a yellow-lane policy that were blamed for the worsening of the traffic problem on EDSA.