By Jel Santos
The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) said that it will abide by the injunction order of a Quezon City Regional Trial Court (RTC) which halted the implementation of provincial bus ban along EDSA.
“We have no comment for now until after we assemble our legal team and OSG [Office of the Solicitor General]. We need the opinion of lawyers. But of course we will follow what the court says,” Asec. Celine Pialago, MMDA spokesperson, said.
In a 25-page ruling dated July 31, 2019, Quezon City RTC Branch 223 issued a writ of preliminary injunction stopping the implementation of Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) Memorandum Circular 2019-001 which requires all provincial buses to end their routes at any integrated terminal exchange, prohibiting them from traversing or passing through EDSA.
It also halted the implementation of the MMDA Regulation No. 19-002 which revokes the issuance of business permits to all public utility vehicle terminals and operators along the major road.
Presiding Judge Caridad Walse Lutero found “just cause” to issue an injunction on the petition filed by provincial bus operators against the MMDA, and the LTFRB.
As such, the court found that there is “no basis” in claiming that public land transportation service contributes to the worsening traffic in the metropolis.
The judge also noted that MMDA and LTFRB have not been able to present sufficient justification for the bus ban.
Meanwhile, the MMDA and LTFRB were given until August 14 to file their answer to the civil case.