President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday urged Congress to abolish the Pasig River Rehabilitation Commission (PRRC), claiming that the government was wasting time and money on such “inutile” offices.
“There is nothing to clean in the Pasig River. It is already clean. That is the state-of-the-art ng Pasig. Unless we require every building not only along the river but everybody who has a waste to dump in a sewage or sewerage, walang mangyari,” explained Duterte during a speech before new government officials in Malacañang.
The President said the money allotted for PRRC’s operations could instead be used in the purchase of rice or medicines.
“We are wasting time. You are paying people for nothing,” he added, as he recalled firing PRRC Executive director Jose Antonio Goitia for alleged corruption.
The PRRC was created by then-President Joseph Estrada in 1999 through an executive order. The inter-agency body was established to ensure that the waterway was restored to its historically pristine condition, and was conducive to transport, recreation, and tourism.
Duterte recently transferred the chairmanship of the PRRC from the Department of Budget and Management to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
The 27-kilometer Pasig River connects the Laguna de Bay and Manila Bay. The river traverses the cities of Manila, Makati, Mandaluyong, Pasig, Taguig, and the municipalities of Pateros and Taytay. — DVM, GMA News