Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel IIIon Wednesdaysaid that government agencies with jurisdiction over traffic should implement all laws of the Philippines relating to motorcycle safety.
A study conducted jointly in 2017 by the University of the Philippines School of Urban and Regional Planning and the National Center for Transportation Studies found that existing motorcycle safety laws and regulations adequately address the important aspects of motorcycle safety, but they are not consistently enforced.
“For government agencies, enforcing the law is mandatory and not optional. They must enforce these motorcycle safety laws firmly and consistently. Otherwise, why do they exist in the first place?”, said Pimentel.
The Senate President is alarmed at the increasing rates of motorcycle fatalities in the country, as figures from the Metro Manila Development Authority showed that motorcycles constituted 35% of all vehicles involved in fatal accidents.
Pimentel said, “People die when you don’t enforce traffic laws. This matter must be addressed urgently.”
However, Pimentel also understood that logistical issues can curb enforcement.
The Senate chief said, “If these agencies cannot fully enforce traffic safety laws, they should come to me and tell me why. If the problem is equipment and infrastructure, I will help them get the funding.”
At the same time, Pimentel made it clear he will not allow gaps in mandate and resources to be used as a catch-all excuse by traffic regulatory agencies.
Pimentel said, “We all know corruption exists in the enforcement of traffic laws. These corrupt individuals must be rooted out and excised from the agencies they serve in as soon as possible.”
The Senate President emphasized that severe penalties await those who abuse their position of trust for personal gain.
Pimentel said, “We also have laws on corruption, and I will see they are enforced on those who compromise the safety of our citizens for a few more pesos in their pockets.”
The countrys third-highest official also assailed the culture of ‘ningas-cogon’ among enforcers.
Pimentel said, “Sometimes a law is passed, enforced vigorously, and then conveniently forgotten by both the people and enforcers. That is not how things should work. Laws do not have an expiry date. Until repealed or amended, we all have a duty to uphold them.”
Photo courtesy of https://www.carmudi.com.ph/