MANILA — Puwersa ng Bayaning Atleta (PBA) partylist Rep. Jericho Nograles on Tuesday said Busan Universal Rail Inc. (BURI) is lying through its teeth in claiming that the MRT 3 breakdowns and glitches were caused by the system’s old and dilapidated train rails.
“Don’t blame it on the rails! BURI should stop singing Milli Vanilli’s ‘Blame it on the Rain’ and admit their own incompetence. Lumang tugtugin na yan. You cannot blame the rails for the missing parts, the fire incidents, the aircon failure, the door jamming, the overpriced services, the fake parts and many others,” said Nograles who exposed the anomalies behind the maintenance contract entered into by the government and BURI.
“While the rails may have something to do with some of the breakdowns, most of which were a result of incompetence, lack of foresight and maybe even sabotage,” Nograles added.
Nograles said that BURI should have not agreed with the terms of contract which requires them to rehabilitate and ensure the smooth operation of the MRT3 if they end up making excuses for their failure to deliver their end of the deal.
Nograles said BURI also could not use the issue on the condition of the rails on its failure to deliver its commitment to rehabilitate the 43 train coaches which were left rotting at the MRT3 main depot. Out of the 26 coaches that were supposed to have been rehabilitated as scheduled, none have been delivered completely by BURI.
“How can they blame their failure to rehabilitate the trains on the alleged defects of the rails? How can they explain the fact that the LRT trains which is a much older system is running better than MRT3?” Nograles said.
Nograles also refuted BURI claims that the termination of the their contract should still go through arbitration because this option is only available for valid and legal contracts.
“How can they claim the right to arbitration when their contract itself is patently illegal and therefore invalid?” Nograles said.
Nograles said the DOTr under Secretary Arthur Tugade should stand their ground against BURI and file plunder charges against those who were responsible for the anomalous deal.
Nograles added that the DOTr should immediately recover the original Bombardier Vehicle Logic Units (VLUs) which were mysteriously taken off the MRT 3 cars as these may solve some of the system’s recurring glitches.