JOINT forces of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and Manila Traffic and Parking Bureau (MTPB) on Thursday conducted clearing operations in Manila and removed obstructions, including a makeshift pool, on the stretch of Capulong Street in Tondo.
Residents of Capulong Street were taken by surprise upon seeing clearing operations group and anti-illegal parking members arrive and started to dismantle all forms of obstruction that practically occupied one lane of the thoroughfare.
During the operation, MMDA General Manager Jojo Garcia immediately ordered the removal of the makeshift swimming pool made of tarpaulin set up for a birthday celebration.
“Setting up this pool is dangerous, as children who will go to the swimming pool might be hit by passing vehicles,” Garcia said.
Other obstructions and eyesores removed included assorted metals, tires, wood, broken appliances and furniture, debris, canopies, carts, tarpaulins, bicycles, tables and chairs of sari-sari (variety) stores.
With their relentless operation, Garcia said they hope to promote discipline while keeping sidewalks and major thoroughfares free from obstruction or encroachment.
“The problem on illegal parking and illegal vending has been existing for decades already. We lack discipline. We continue doing our old ways, old habits and that is what we want to break,” Garcia said.
Garcia added the MMDA is not against vendors who are trying to make a living for their families, but “things should be in order.”
MTPB chief Dennis Alcoreza said Manila City Mayor Joseph E. Estrada directed them to work together with MMDA to clear the city.
Alcoreza also vowed to regularly deploy teams in the area to maintain the orderliness that the MMDA has started.
“The City of Manila and MMDA cannot sustain the clearing operation alone, but combining our forces, we can make a difference,” Alcoreza said.