by Charissa M. Luci
Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez warned the Supreme Court (SC) justices Wednesday they could face impeachment if they issue a temporary restraining order (TRO) against the construction of the proposed common station for the Light Rail Transit (LRT) and Metro Rail Transit (MRT).
Alvarez made the warning during the House Committee on Transportation hearing.
“Subukan nilang mag-TRO, impeach namin sila. Hindi tayo nagbibiro dito, totohanin namin ito (Let them try to issue a TRO. They will be impeached. We are not joking, we will do it),” he said.
He chided the Department of Transportation (DOTr) for the sluggish pace in implementing the R2.8-billion project.
“I am explaining to the DOTr that the common terminal has a budget as originally conceived, there’s a budget, why not pursue it and bid it out? The government will spend for it, that’s a government project, what are they afraid of?” Alvarez said.
He blamed that the “business interests of the few” for the delay in the starting the project.
“It is about time to serve the people, not the interest of the businessmen,” Alvarez said.
The station between SM North Edsa and Trinoma in Quezon City will link LRT Line 1 and MRT Lines 1 and 7.
Work on the 13,700-square meter common station is scheduled to start at the end of this year 2017 and will take two years to complete.
The Light Rail Manila Corp. (LRMC) had offered to build a R250-million temporary station as the government tries to sort out the problems confronting the construction of the common station.
Rogelio Singson, the chief executive officer of the LRMC, which operates LRT-1, said they made the offer to DOTr.
The LRMC plans to build the temporary station, which could cost from R250 million to R280 million, at the original site of the common station in front of SM North Annex.