WATCH: MMDA says ‘no compromise’ for vendors after clearing ops in Caloocan

Rosette Adel ( - August 5, 2019 - 4:33pm

MANILA, Philippines— The Metro Manila Development Authority and a number of vendors from Caloocan City on Monday had a dialogue following clearing operations in the area to rid streets and sidewalks of obstructions.

Some of the vendors, who said they had been selling on city streets for as long as 40 years, appealed their displacement.

MMDA General Garcia Jojo Garcia, who oversaw the clearing operations, however, stressed that these vendors have been selling on the streets for free and without paying any tax for years.

“Siguro naman it’s about time na gobyerno naman ang gumamit… pagamit naman natin sa gobyerno,” Garcia said, referring to public roads.

(Maybe it’s about time that the government would use it…let us allow the government to use it)

The vendors asked for more time, citing that they do not earn much from selling, but Garcia said there would be “no compromise” for them as of now.

Garcia maintained that selling on sidewalks is not allowed.

“Susubukan natin pero no compromise sa inyo ngayon, kawawa naman si Mayor (Oscar Malapitan)…Ito bawal. Hindi puwede sa bangketa. Tulungan natin sa mayor,” he added, in response to the vendor’s plea.

(Let’s try, but no compromise for now. Have mercy on the mayor. This is prohibited. You can’t sell on the sidewalk. Let’s help the mayor)

Last week, MMDA Chairman Danilo Lim said there would be no let-up in their clearing operations since the Department of Interior and Local Government gave an order to reclaim the roads within 60 days.

READ: DILG reverts to 60-day deadline for LGUs to clear public roads

The 60-day deadline began last week.

'Sidewalks for pedestrians, roads for motorists'

It was prompted by President Rodrigo Duterte’s order to reclaim public roads used for private ends during his fourth State of the Nation Address last July 22.

Garcia also previously said the “public roads were being used for profit for a long time and it’s about time we reclaim it for the common good.”

“Sidewalks are for pedestrians while public roads are for motorists,” Garcia said last week.

Despite his firm stance on removing vendors on streets, Garcia said the government is not “anti-vendor.”

“Hindi ho kami kontra. Hindi ho kami anti-vendor, tinatama lang natin,” the MMDA general manager said.

(We’re not against it. We’re not anti-vendor, we’re just making it right)

Last week, vendors of Baclaran also decried the clearing operations in the area.

WATCH: Baclaran sidewalk vendors decry clearing ops

—With reports from The STAR/Marc Jayson Cayabyab

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