By Dexter Cabalza
Parañaque Mayor Edwin Olivarez has ordered an investigation into the alleged connivance between informal settlers and tricycle drivers to clog the drainage system in some areas in the city, allowing the latter to charge high fares.
According to Olivarez, a group of informal settlers near Gatchalian Subdivision in Barangay San Dionisio “dumped bags of sand and other hard objects” into drain pipes, causing heavy floods on Tuesday while Tropical Depression “Maring” was lashing Metro Manila.
“There should be someone [held] accountable because this is clearly sabotage…,” he said.
“What they did is an inconvenience not only to the residents of the subdivision but also to people living in nearby areas,” he added.
Olivarez said the city rescue team was surprised to learn of waist-high waters in Gatchalian Subdivision because it had been flood-free for months due to its newly-constructed drainage system.
The report said tricycle and pedicab drivers charged as much as P200 for a trip instead of the usual P17 fare.
Sought for comment, Erlinda Bernando, secretary of Barangay San Dionisio, said they have not received any complaints about it.
Rey Cullado, a committee officer of Gatchalian Operators and Tricycle Drivers Association, also denied the report, saying the group imposes stiff penalties on erring drivers.
Olivarez warned that those involved in the racket would be charged and their tricycle franchise may be revoked.