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Drilon bill to give Duterte emergency powers to fix traffic

Published July 1, 2016 1:52pm

Senate President Franklin Drilon on Friday filed a bill seeking to
grant President Rodrigo Duterte emergency powers to address the
perennial traffic problem not only in Metro Manila but also in other
major urban areas as well.

Motor Vehicle Users Charge Fund, the Philippine Amusement and

Gaming Corporation and current budget of the agencies involved.
A necessity
Drilon said the emergency power will capacitate Duterte in
addressing the horrendous traffic situation within and outside
Metro Manila.

Under Senate Bill 11 or the proposed Transportation Crisis Act of

2016, the President will be authorized to adopt alternative
methods of procurement for the construction repair, rehabilitation,
improvement or maintenance of transportation projects aimed at
the reduction of traffic congestion in Metro Manila and other urban

The emergency power is already a necessity given the

magnitude of the transportation crisis that not only impedes the
mobility of people, goods and services, but also threatens the
livability of our cities, he said in a press statement.

These include limited source bidding or selective bidding, direct

contracting or single source procurement, repeat order, shopping,
and negotiated procurement.
In all instances, the President shall ensure that the most
advantageous price for the government is obtained and that the
procedure is undertaken in a transparent manner, the bill states.
It added that no court, except the Supreme Court, shall issue any
temporary restraining order, preliminary injunction or preliminary
mandatory injunction against the government or any of its officials
or any person or entity acting under the government direction to
restrain, prohibit, or compel in the acquisition, clearance, and
development of the right of way; and bidding or awarding of any
transportation project identified by the President, among others.
It also states that the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority
and Department of Transportation (DOT) shall be the urban traffic
management authority in the National Capital Region and other
urban areas. The two agencies will also absorb some functions
currently being performed by the Land Transportation Franchising
and Regulatory Board, Land Transportation Office and Local
Government Units.
The bill will likewise allow the President to reorganize the DOT and
its attached agencies, LTFRB and LTO, and the MMDA.
The bill, which will be valid for two years after its effectivity,
sought to get the necessary funds from the proceeds from the

Drilon said he believes poor traffic management woes are mainly

due to the poor enforcement of traffic rules and the overlapping
functions of government institutions like Department of
Transportation and its attached agencies.
He said that traffic congestion resulted in an estimated
productivity loss of around P2.4 billion a day ($54 million), more
than P800 billion ($18 billion) a year.
If the traffic congestion continues to be unabated, the traffic cost
is expected to increase to P6 billion a day, Drilon said, citing a
study conducted by the Japan International Cooperation Agency in
He said that aside from the cities in Metro Manila, various urban
areas such as Metro Cebu and Cagayan De Oro are also
experiencing horrible traffic congestions, hampering growth and
development. Amita Legaspi/KBK, GMA News
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Besides the constitution, the powers of the President of the
Philippines are specifically outlined in Executive Order No. 292, s.
1987, otherwise known as the Administrative Code of 1987. The
following powers are:
1. Power of control over the executive branch

The President of the Philippines has the mandate of control over all
the executive departments, bureaus, and offices. This includes
restructuring, reconfiguring, and appointments of their respective
officials. The Administrative Code also provides for the President to
implementation of laws.

or offices of the government, for information or compliance, shall

be embodied in memorandum circulars.

2. Power ordinance power

It is important to note that during the term of President Ferdinand

E. Marcos, he used executive issuances known as presidential
decrees as a form of legislation. These decrees have the full force
and effect of laws because at the time the legislature did not exist
and, when the 1973 Constitution was put into full force and effect,
it gave the power to the President to do as such. This continued
until the first year of President Corazon C. Aquinos term. However,
President Aquino opted to used executive orders instead of
presidential decrees. President Aquinos executive orders,
however, still had the full force and effect of laws until the
ratification of the 1987 Constitution.

The President of the Philippines has the power to give executive

issuances, which are means to streamline the policy and programs
of an administration. There are six issuances that the President
may issue. They are the following as defined in the Administrative
Code of 1987:
Executive orders Acts of the President providing for rules of a
general or permanent character in implementation or execution of
constitutional or statutory powers shall be promulgated in
executive orders.

General or special orders Acts and commands of the President

in his capacity as commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of the
Philippines shall be issued as general or special orders.

3. Power over aliens

Administrative orders Acts of the President which relate to
particular aspects of governmental operations in pursuance of his
duties as the administrative head shall be promulgated in
administrative orders.
Proclamations Acts of the President fixing a date or declaring a
status or condition of public moment or interest, upon the
existence of which the operation of a specific law or regulation is
made to depend, shall be promulgated in proclamations which
shall have the force of an executive order.

The President of the Philippines has certain powers over nonFilipinos in the Philippines. The powers he may exercise over
foreigners in the country are as follows:

Memorandum orders Acts of the President on matters of

administrative detail, or of subordinate or temporary interest
which only concern a particular officer or government office shall
be embodied in memorandum orders.

Memorandum circulars Acts of the President on matters relating

to internal administration, which the President desires to bring to
the attention of all or some of the departments, agencies, bureaus,

The chief executive may have an alien in the Philippines

deported from the country after due process.
The President may change the status of a foreigner, as
prescribed by law, from a non-immigrant status to a
permanent resident status without necessity of visa.
The President may choose to overrule the Board of
Commissioners of the Bureau of Immigration before their
decision becomes final and executory (after 30 days of the
issuance of the decision). The Board of Commissioners of
the Bureau of Immigration has jurisdiction over all
deportation cases.
The president is also mandated by the Administrative Code
of 1987 to exercise powers as recognized by the generally
accepted principles of international law.

4. Powers of eminent domain, escheat, land reservation and

recovery of ill-gotten wealth
The President of the Philippines has the authority to exercise the
power of eminent domain. The power of eminent domains means
the state has the power to seize or authorize the seizure of private
property for public use with just compensation. There are two
constitutional provisions, however, that limit the exercise of such
power: Article III, Section 9 (1) of the Constitution provides that no
person shall be deprived of his/her life, liberty, or property without
due process of law. Furthermore, Article III, Section 9 (2), provides
that private property shall not be taken for public use without just
Once the aforementioned conditions are met, the President may
exercise the power of eminent domain which are as follows:
Power of eminent domain The President shall determine when it
is necessary or advantageous to exercise the power of eminent
domain in behalf of the national government, and direct the
solicitor general, whenever he deems the action advisable, to
institute expropriation proceedings in the proper court.
Power to direct escheat or reversion proceedings The President
shall direct the solicitor general to institute escheat or reversion
proceedings over all lands transferred or assigned to persons
disqualified under the constitution to acquire land.

(2) He shall also have the power to reserve from sale or other
disposition and for specific public uses or purposes, any land
belonging to the private domain of the government, or any of the
friar lands, the use of which is not otherwise directed by law, and
thereafter such land shall be used for the purposes specified by
such proclamation until otherwise provided by law.
Power over ill-gotten wealth The President shall direct the
solicitor general to institute proceedings to recover properties
unlawfully acquired by public officials or employees, from them or
from their nominees or transferees.
Within the period fixed in, or any extension thereof authorized by,
the constitution, the President shall have the authority to recover
ill-gotten properties amassed by the leaders and supporters of the
previous regime, and protect the interest of the people through
orders of sequestration or freezing of assets or accounts.
5. Power of appointment
The President may appoint officials of the Philippine government
as provided by the constitution and laws of the Philippines. Some
of these appointments, however, may need the approval of the
Committee on Appointments (a committee composed of members
from the House of Representatives and the Senate of the
6. Power of general supervision over local governments

Power to reserve lands of the public and private domain of the

(1) The president shall have the power to reserve for settlement or
public use, and for specific public purposes, any of the lands of the
public domain, the use of which is not otherwise directed by law.
The reserved land shall thereafter remain subject to the specific
public purpose indicated until otherwise provided by law or

The President of the Philippines, as chief executive, has the

mandate to supervise local governments in the Philippines, despite
their autonomous status as provided by Republic Act No. 7160
otherwise known as the Local Government Code of 1991.
Traditionally, this is done by the Department of the Interior and
Local Government, headed by a cabinet secretaryan alter ego of
the President.
7. Other powers

Aside from the aforementioned powers of the President of the

Philippines, he can also exercise powers enumerated in the
constitution, and powers given to him by law.

Since the power to appoint is executive in nature, Congress
cannot usurp this function.

The Powers Of The President Of The Philippines

1. Executive power
2. Power of appointment
3. Power if removal
4. Power of control
5. Military powers
6. Pardoning power
7. Borrowing power
8. Diplomatic power
9. Budgetary power
10. Informing power
11. Other powers

Executive power is vested in the President of the Philippines.

2) The scope of this power is set forth in Art. VII of the

Constitution. But this power is not limited to those set forth
therein. The SC, in Marcos v. Manglapus, referred to the RESIDUAL
powers of the President as the Chief Executive of the country,
which powers include others not set forth in the Constitution.
EXAMPLE: The President is immune from suit and criminal
prosecution while he is in office.
3) Privilege of immunity from suit is personal to the President
and may be invoked by him alone. It may also be waived by the
President, as when he himself files suit.
Sections 14-16. POWER TO APPOINT

While Congress (and the Constitution in certain cases) may
prescribe the qualifications for particular offices, the determination
of who among those who are qualified will be appointed is the
Presidents prerogative.
Section 17. Power of Control and Supervision
Power of Control:
The power of an officer to alter, modify, or set aside what a
subordinate officer has done in the performance of his duties, and
to substitute the judgment of the officer for that of his
subordinate. Thus, the President exercises control over all the
executive departments, bureaus, and offices.
The Presidents power over government-owned corporations
comes not from the Constitution but from statute. Hence, it may
be taken away by statute.
Disciplinary Powers:
1) The power of the President to discipline officers flows from the
power to appoint the, and NOT from the power control.
2) BUT While the President may remove from office those who
are not entitled to security of tenure, or those officers with no set
terms, such as Department Heads, the officers, and employees
entitled to security of tenure cannot be summarily removed from
Power of Supervision:
1) This is the power of a superior officer to ensure that the laws
are faithfully executed by subordinates.

2) The power of the president over local government units is only

of general supervision. Thus, he can only interfere with the
actions of their executive heads if these are contrary to law.
3) The execution of laws is an OBLIGATION of the President. He
cannot suspend the operation of laws.
4) The power of supervision does not include the power of
control; but the power of control necessarily includes the power of
1) The President is the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces.
2) Whenever necessary, the President may call out the AFP to
a) Lawless violence;
b) Invasion; or
c) Rebellion.
3) The President may also:
a) Suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus; and
b) Proclaim a state of martial law.
Suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus
and declaring martial law;
1. Grounds
1. Invasion or
2. Rebellion; and
3. Public safety requires it.
1. The invasion or rebellion must be ACTUAL and not merely
1. Limitations:
1. Suspension or proclamation is effective for only 60 days.
1. Within 48 hours from the declaration or suspension, the
President must submit a report to Congress.
1. Congress, by majority vote and voting jointly, may revoke
the same, and the President cannot set aside the revocation.
1. In the same manner, at the Presidents initiative, Congress
can extend the same for a period determined by Congress if:
i. Invasion or rebellion persist and
ii. Public safety requires it.

Economic effects of traffic in Metro Manila

The saying that time is money is certainly the case for businesses.
Delivering finished goods or receiving raw materials or inventory is
time sensitive. Delays affect production, delivery and work
schedules, take its toll on the bottom line of the company. It could
also have an adverse impact on market demand, where alternative
suppliers from other countries are more readily able to provide
products at more reliable delivery schedules. Our traffic situation
has forced the implementation of color-coding schemes, truck bans
and even contributed to our ongoing port-congestion problem, all
of which has an adverse financial impact on businesses.
Public transport, delivery trucks and shuttle services are also
victim to the perpetual traffic in Metro Manila. Instead of being
able to do three or four round trips, they are lucky to be able to do
two, which translates to lost revenues and, in many cases, a shift
from profitable operations to a losing business. Public service also
suffers in that the available schedules become less frequent and
the waiting time becomes longer.
Without a doubt, the public, transport companies and businesses
are all losing time and money, even the government is losing taxes
because of the lost revenues from the traffic situation. Why is this
happening when the solution is staring us in the face? Because
government officials allow it to happen. As an example, you can
see the horde of pedicabs plying the areas of La Salle and Saint
Scholasticas in Manila, blocking traffic and making counterflow.
You can see the sidewalk vendors at the corner of Edsa and Don
Chino Roces blocking one of the two lanes right in plain sight of the
Metropolitan Manila Development Authority enforcers. You can see
jeepneys everywhere stopping in the middle of the road to pick up
passengers and the buses along Edsa swerving out of the bus
lanes, blocking another two lanes.
Why do traffic enforcers and their supervisors allow such things to
happen? The answer is a combination of gross negligence,
incompetence nd corruption. All of which end up perpetuating
poverty and costing all of us three years of our lives. Please,
remember this during election time and let us vote for people who
can truly fix our traffic problem. We all deserve better.
--- Of course, the longer you are on the road, the more emission
your public transport or private vehicle emits. Additionally, the
efficiency of engines tend to be less when it is on idle or at slow
speed since incomplete combustion is more likely. Naturally, the
more pollutants the population is exposed to, the more effects it
has on the general public health, leading to more medical bills and
a shorter life span

According to a CNN report, a 2012 study by Washington University

in St. Louis noted that long commutes eat up exercise time.
Thus, long commutes are associated with higher weight, lower
fitness levels, and higher blood pressureall strong predictors of
heart disease, diabetes, and some types of cancer.
Air pollution

worldwide every year.

The National Emissions Inventory in 2012 said that 71 percent of
air pollution in the country comes from vehicles on the road. This
number is even higher in the National Capital Region (NCR) where
85 percent of air pollution comes from vehicles.

Commuters who are exposed to air pollution, like those riding in

non-airconditioned vehicles such as jeepneys and motorcycles,
double their health risk.

Aside from chronic lung diseases, research by UC Irvine M.D./Ph.D.

student Sharine Wittkopp and her peers finds that air pollution can
cause blood pressure to rise and inflame the arteries, increasing
heart attack and stroke risk.

Aside from stress, they are also exposed to pollutants that can
affect the lungs. In fact, the World Health Organization (WHO) said
that air pollution is to blame for 3.2 million preventable deaths

"Blood pressure went up with increased traffic pollutants, and EKG

(electrocardiogram) changes showed decreased blood flow to the