Press Release
May 8, 2009


Opposition Sen. Chiz Escudero yesterday bashed the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) for failing to address the recurring problem of flash floods in Metro Manila due to clogged drainages.

"Metro Manila was not even one of the areas being directly affected by typhoon Emong but flash floods still hit some of the cities. I ask the MMDA, can we expect more floods come the rainy season?" said Escudero.

Areas in Marikina, Malabon and Quezon City were heavily flooded due to the continuous downpour of rains and clogged drainage systems and esteros last Thursday.

"We have seen how the MMDA wields its authority in clearing sidewalks of vendors when it wants to. Why then can it not wield the same authority when it comes to flood control?" Escudero asked.

The senator said the MMDA, which has a total anti-flood budget of almost half a billion pesos for 2009, should publicly disclose what it is doing with the funds intended for flood control.

Of this amount, Escudero said some P221 million is allocated for the maintenance, repair and rehabilitation of drainage systems and related facilities

"The problem of flooding has affected the way of life in Metro Manila and has now become predictable. This shouldn't be so. It seems that year after year, it doesn't seem to improve, and in fact seems to be actually deteriorating," he said.

He said that the MMDA only seems to focus on things visible to the public under its "Metro Guwapo" program, particularly in EDSA and main thoroughfares in the metro.

Escudero said that if the MMDA applied the same zeal to its anti-flood projects that it shows in clearing sidewalks and putting mini-gardens along EDSA, then the flooding problem can be eased considerably.

"If the MMDA can spend millions in solving the traffic problem by building elevated U-turn slots along C-5, which many derisively call the ninth and tenth wonders of the world, then how come we don't feel it is spending the same amount of money and effort for flood control?" he said.

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