Working towards the goal of clearing the streets and fixing traffic woes, the City of Manila conducted clearing operations in Raon Street, Quiapo early Monday.
More than 400 sidewalk vendors from the corner of Rizal Avenue to Quezon Boulevard in Raon were asked to leave on Monday morning by Task Force Manila Cleanup.
The was also able to fill up six truckloads of garbage from stalls and pushcarts of illegal vendors.
Mayor Joseph Estrada ordered the road clearing operation in Raon, known to be the ‘electronics capital’ of the country, and called on motorists to refrain from parking their vehicles indiscriminately which causes massive traffic jams in the area.
“We keep on clearing our streets, but motorists have no discipline when parking their cars,” Estrada said. “Motorists want to park near where they are going, even if parking there will obstruct the flow of traffic.”
Estrada added, “In other cities around the world like Seoul, Tokyo, New York, and Beijing, people rarely use their cars in going around the city. They opt to ride public transportation, they unload in designated areas, and they are willing to walk to their destination.”
According to the former President, the city’s clearing operations should be coupled with encouraging people to walk. He added that these operations are aimed at restoring the old glory of Manila.
According to Che Borromeo, head of Task Force Manila Cleanup, now is the time to clear Raon of illegal vendors and garbage.
“Vendors are occupying almost the entire street. The government has been tolerating these vendors for a long time,” Borromeo said.
The Bureau of Permits of Manila City Hall has already cancelled the special permits that were previously issued to sidewalk vendors in Raon.
“There is an increasing number of sidewalk vendors. Some of them live on the sidewalk. That’s where they sleep,” Borromeo said
The City of Manila has conducted clearing operations in Divisoria, Blumentritt Road, Sta. Cruz-Rizal Avenue, and Quiapo.
Last week, Manila city officials also conducted clearing operations in Juan Luna and Sta. Elena Streets in Binondo, where they found a drug den under a bridge, with a police precinct nearby.