By ANNE MARXZE D. UMIL
MANILA – “There is no transportation crisis,” Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a press briefing in Malacanang, which drew flak from the riding public.
To their dismay, fuming netizens did not mince words against the government and took to social media their disgust saying that no hardworking Filipino deserves this adversity. They also stressed that those who refuse to accept that there is transportation crisis in the Philippines are “detached from reality.”
Panelo quickly belied this and said that he is aware of what the riding public is enduring. This is why he accepted the challenge to commute on his way to work on Friday, Oct. 11.
Netizens said Panelo should take the train on a rush hour and without bodyguards.
‘Transportation woes only affect the poor therefore there’s no crisis’
It is only the poor who are affected by the lack of efficient mass transportation in the capital; for the government officials who are mostly comfortable in their private cars, there is no transportation crisis in the Philippines.
People can’t afford to have a strike and not go to work amidst the transportation crisis because most are poor. Transport groups can’t afford it also coz they are also poor.
The government controls us because we are poor.
Now you know why they keep us poor.
— isolinad (@iamwithoutfear) October 8, 2019
A mass transportation crisis to them happens when the rich won’t be able to travel.
There is no crisis yet since only the poor are affected.
— Dr. P (@atty_lp) October 8, 2019
Those who still refuse to believe we’re undergoing a mass transportation crisis are
A. Those who’ve never tried commuting in the PH
B. Those who think everyone can afford ride-sharing services
C. So detached from the daily realities of our ordinary kababayans
D. All of the ^
— Stacey Bellido (@stacey_bellido) October 8, 2019
For most commuters, they have done their best to be punctual by leaving their houses as early as 4:00 a.m. so that they can make it on time at work or at school.
There is a fucking crisis with public transportation when students like me literally have to leave our houses at 3:30 am to make it to a 7 am class. Stupid fucking idiots https://t.co/D77q28VgN9
— fish [ia:prelims] (@dyoozi) October 8, 2019
PANELO: “You want to arrive early? Leave early”
If you take three hours to get to work at 8 AM, you should be leaving by 5, and waking up by 3.30 to prepare. Obviously, Panelo is suggesting you use Shabu to be productive with a schedule like this
— Kae #StandWithBarurotNews (@ifyouseekkae) October 8, 2019
This fucking government thinks there is no mass transportation crisis but welp. Normally, I only have a 15-minute train ride then walk for another 30 minutes.
Today, I was at the station at 10:03, got on the train at 10:21 and reached my stop at 10:52. Bye 11am clock-in. ?
— ? Marie ? ??????????? (@RenOnTheWorld) October 9, 2019
— Ms. Petty ¦¦ Lion Cub Comeback (@Cici_Maraj) October 9, 2019
Some also shared how hellish their commute is.
‘New jet for the President amid transportation woes’
Netizens also did not take sitting down the news of the government’s procurement of Gulfstream G280, a P2 billion worth jet that would fly President Duterte and other senior government officials. Based on reports, the jet is set for delivery next year.
P2-B for a vehicle to be used by one official only “in the event of a crisis situation.” But this admin is not spending anything to try and solve the very real crippling traffic and transportation crisis that’s affecting millions of ordinary commuters. https://t.co/zLQ1MqTkV5
— TheEmperor (@Eric_Cabahug) October 8, 2019
How could it be a justified expense when we’re having a transportation crisis in the metro? Hindi nyo basta pera lang yan para gastusin nang walang habas. Pera ng taumbayan yan, gamitin nyo ang pera ng taumbayan sa mas mga nararapat na pampulikong gawain. Grrr, sarap magmura!!!!
— Uncle Joey (@tombolinajolie) October 9, 2019
Fuck this administration. Panelo is denying there’s a transportation crisis and asks the public to adjust their commute times. MMDA spokesperson wants the public to be more patient. And to add more insult to the injury, they’re buying a private jet for the president worth B of $.
— Jonas Roque (@facebuko) October 8, 2019
LRT Line 1- Gil Puyat Station
Tuesday palang po. Di po Biyernes. Di din po araw ng sahod. Wala ding strike. Pero yung pila napakahaba. Samantalang may bagong Jet yung pangulo. Dinedeny din pong may transportation crisis tayo.
Gusto lang po namin umuwi. pic.twitter.com/JUcKbnF15M
— Ken Sahashi ? (@EnSahashi) October 8, 2019
In his tweet, Bagong Alyansang Makabayan Renato Reyes Jr. explained that the current situation of mass transportation is a result of “decades of neglect and profit-driven projects.”
There is NO quick fix to the mass transport crisis. Denying its existence will not make things better for commuters. The first step is to recognize the problem.
— Renato Reyes, Jr. (@natoreyes) October 8, 2019