Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade is planning a complete overhaul of the Metro Rail Transit 3, but even Malacañang is unsure when commuters can expect relief.
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque on Tuesday (November 21) said he talked to Tugade on the reforms that the Department of Transportation (DOTr) is planning to solve the MRT-3’s frequent breakdowns.
“He assured me number one, that they are going to procure a reliable maintenance contractor; number two, they’re building new rails. They’re buying new train cars and new signaling system,” Roque said in a press briefing.
However, when asked for a timeline on the improvements planned by the DOTr, Roque said: “I wish I could give you a deadline. All that I can offer you is I can offer once a week to take MRT coming to work…”
President Rodrigo Duterte’s spokesperson appealed to the public for understanding since the changes in the MRT-3 will take a while.
He once again blamed Busan Universal Rail Inc. (BURI), the railway line’s previous maintenance provider, for the decrepit state of the MRT-3.
“Ang hinihingi ko po sa ating taumbayan at humingi na nga ng paumanhin ang ating Presidente dito sa mga pangyayari sa MRT ay talaga namang nagkaroon tayo ng mga systemic problems diyan dahil inaward noong nakaraang administrasyon ‘yung maintenance contract sa isang kumpanyang walang kakayahan,” Roque said.
The Palace official earlier said Tugade still enjoys Duterte’s confidence and trust despite the problems plaguing the MRT-3.