By: D’ Observer

(THE author is a real person who fell in love with Iloilo. He wants to remain anonymous due to some “complications” but still, he raises very valid points in his contributions – Editor)

ON NOVEMBER 15, 2018, we were confronted with a picture of a tricycle still driving on a national highway and captioned with the statement “if local officials have the balls to enforce traffic laws.”

A few months ago, it was published in this newspaper that local/barangay officials agreed to ban tricycles and trisikads from national highways. This ban does exist for many years, at least 10  to 15 years, but like too many others laws, regulations or ordinances are NEVER enforced.

On November 14, 2017, the headline of this newspaper read “Mayor halts P25-M traffic system project.” The reason was, amongst others: “the problem of the traffic has yet to be identified.” Well, violating the above ban is one of the many reasons for Iloilo’s traffic problems. Iloilo’s traffic problems are very obvious, but unfortunately the local officials and the Mayor don’t want to see it and to know about it.

Two of my doctors feel the same like many other car driver and myself, they are “pissed off” (their very words)  with tricycles and trisikads driving in the middle of national highways, blocking the traffic flow, causing congestions and being a hazard to themselves and others. One night, I had to drive to the city in rainy conditions. Opposing cars blinded my view and I almost overlooked a trisikad without lights in the middle of national highway No. 5. If I hit the trisikad, I would have been in BIG trouble, but not the trisikad rider, who violated the law.

As to the above question by Sir F. A. Angelo, “if local officials have the balls to enforce traffic laws,” let us look at some other laws, regulations and ordinances and we’ll get the answer.

In the last one or two years, the “Anti-Littering Ordinance” was revised, but did it make any difference? Just drive around Iloilo City’s streets early in the morning and you’ll see loads of garbage which people threw away.

In the last one to two years, there was a lot of talk about speed limits within Iloilo City, officials held lots of meetings, and spent at lot but has anything changed? Judge by yourself when you drive on our national highways or the Circumferential Road.

There was another ordinance to limit the noise level caused by motorcycles. Has the noise level dropped at all?

These are just a few examples of FAILED law/regulation and ordinance enforcements. So, why should the ban of tricycles and trisikads from national highways be successful?

Another question is “do the officials, tricycle and trisikad riders know how to identify a national highway?” On the other hand, “do officials have sufficient time to enforce the ban?”

As we can frequently read in this newspaper, some officials are also engaged in other activities to improve their livelihood besides the point that they want to be re-elected.

To cut a long story short, there will be hardly any chance/hope that we’ll miss the tricycles and trisikads on our national highways. Isn’t it sad that there is NO political will to improve Iloilo’s traffic situation, even if more and more people get killed or injured in traffic accidents?