Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) traffic czar Edison Bong Nebrija appears to have had enough of Col. Bonifacio Bosita, founder of the Riders’ Safety Advocates of the Philippines (RSAP).
In a Facebook post Sunday night, March 7, Nebrija anonymously called out someone with political ambition for allegedly exploiting or using MMDA traffic enforcers for his ends.
“Huwag mong gamitin ang mga pobreng enforcer namin sa pamumulitika mo. Ginagamit mo lang ang riding community para sa political advancement mo, pwede ba? (Don’t use our hapless enforcers in your politicking. You’re just using the riding community for your political advancement),” he wrote.
Nebrija would confirm Monday morning, March 8 to this reporter that he was indeed alluding to Bosita. Netizens might be familiar with the latter for viral videos wherein he “saves” motorcycle riders or motorists from being wrongfully cited or ticketed for traffic violations.
What triggered Nebrija’s vitriol-filled post was an incident Friday wherein Bosita made an MMDA traffic enforcer pay a female supermarket employee a day’s worth of her salary–aroung P500–for causing her to miss work that day.
Minutes earlier, the enforcer ticketed the supermarket worker and her husband for a “dress code” violation while riding aboard a motorbike along EDSA. The woman, who was the back rider, apparently wore slippers and not shoes like her husband-rider.
A YouTube video uploaded by Katropa Allen showed how Bosita argued that it was illegal to ticket the couple since the “shoes only” rule applied only to the motorcycle rider and not the back-rider–at least based on his interpretation. The video is hurtling toward the 400,000-view mark as of this posting.
Needless to say, Bosita’s actions didn’t impress Nebrija.
“Ilabas mo ang batas na nagtatalaga sayo ng kapangyarihan na pagbayarin ang enforcer namin ang isang araw na sweldo ng hinuli nila, baka usurpation of authority ka boy para iutos at ipilit sa enforcer namin yan (Show me the law that authorizes you to make our enforcers give salary compensation to the people they’ve apprehended. For you to force that on our enforcers, that could be usurpation of authority),” said the MMDA traffic czar.
“Kung may problema ka sa huli namin bilang dating pulis at myembro ng HPG (Highway Patrol Group) alam mo dapat sa adjudication nireresolba yan at wala kang karapatan pakialamanan huli ng enforcer namin. Kapag mali enforcer namin yaan mong yung hearing officer maresolution nyan at di ikaw (If you have a problem with our apprehension being a former policeman and member of the HPG, then you should know that is resolved during adjudication and that you have no right to interfere with our enforcer’s apprehension. If our enforcer is wrong then let the hearing officer resolve it, not you),” the obviously pissed off Nebrija said.
The MMDA official further gave this advice to Bosita: “Eh kung gusto mong maghearing officer, eh magapply ka sa MMDA at di yung nagpapasikat ka sa YouTube. Marami ka bang views? Malaki na ba kita? Pangpondo na sa eleksyon? (If you want to be a hearing officer then apply at MMDA and not just show off on YouTube. Do you have a lot of views? Are you earning big from it? Is it for election funding?)” In a separate post, Nebrija shared a statement from the Motorcycle Rights Organization (MRO), which sided with the MMDA enforcer who flagged down the couple.
“We stand by the age-old conclusion that if a rider is required to wear shoes, then so does the back rider… The penalty and violation are on the rider since he has the sole power to allow or not allow the back rider to ride the motorcycle,” the statement read.
Nebrija said the MMDA legal team is studying the possibility of filing cases against Bosita for interfering with their enforcers’ duty.
RSAP reportedly has 400,000 members.