OPAV’s statement against BRT is fake news: Tomas

PLEASE don’t be misled by their fake news.

This was Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña’s message to Cebuanos after the Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas (OPAV) said in a Facebook post that the conditions for the Bus Rapid Transit Project (BRT) to succeed in the city don’t exist.

In his news conference yesterday, Osmeña criticized Presidential Assistant for the Visayas Michael Dino and Gordon Allan “Dondi” Joseph, president of the Cebu Business Club, who also sits as executive committee chair of the Metro Cebu Development and Coordinating Board (MCDCB), for their comments.

“They are self-declared experts, basta makakwarta sila (where they see an opportunity to make money) they become an expert,” he said.

OPAV, in its Facebook post, quoted Joseph as saying that the BRT is “poorly designed, off implemented and will most likely fail.”

“The conditions needed for the success of the ill-fated BRT do not exist in Cebu City. The roads are too narrow-- and no road widening is planned (except in depots and stations), which means that a four-lane road will only have two narrow lanes left for vehicles,” Joseph said.

“How did he become head of MCDCB? Cebu City is not a member and how can you be a Metro Cebu without Cebu City? Technically speaking, it’s the governor who is chairman of that body. Who is Dondi Joseph?” Osmeña said.

OPAV had also announced in a press statement that a consortium is now “working closely” with the Department of Transportation for the construction of a Light Rail Transit for Metro Cebu.

However, Dino clarified that he is not part of the consortium.

Asked about the matter, Osmeña said he doesn’t believe Dino’s statement, adding that the latter has been talking about the project even before. (RVC)