The Department of Transportation (DOTr) called out CNN Philippines regarding its “misleading” report that DOTr has offered to scrap the MRT-3 Rehabilitation Project to get funds for COVID-19 response.
“This is to clarify a report that was published by CNN Philippines last night, 7 April 2020, saying that the Department of Transportation (DOTr) has offered to scrap, abandon and discontinue the MRT-3 Rehabilitation Project, and other infrastructure projects, by realigning its funds to become part of the administration’s response initiative against the COVID-19 health crisis,” it said in a Press Statement posted in their Facebook page.
“Allow us to set the record straight that the DOTr DOES NOT, and WILL NOT, DISCONTINUE, SCRAP nor ABANDON projects like the MRT-3 Rehabilitation. The DOTr has only proposed to reallocate a portion of the budget of specific projects that will not be used or disbursed within the year,” it added.
DOTr said they determined that it could set aside about PhP1.1 Billion out of its PhP 17 Billion total project cost, which will form part of the PhP11.1 Billion funding that it had collated from various projects in our aviation, maritime, railways and road sectors.
“Another example of which is PNR Clark Phase 1. Since PNR Clark 1 suspended construction works for one (1) month, that means we are also not paying them for 1 month worth of works. That 1 month worth of works was included in our GAA 2020 Budget, and since we will no longer need it, we offered it to be transferred to the COVID19 response fund,” DOTr continued.
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DOTr calls out CNN Philippines for misleading report
DOTr insisted that “by no means that these re-allocation of portion of the project funds constitute abandonment or scrapping of the said projects entirely.”
“We are issuing this clarification for the record, and we hope that CNN Philippines will immediately rectify their misleading report, for the sake of public interest,” it added.
It ended the statement, “The DOTr stands firm and resolute together with the rest of government in our fight against this global coronavirus pandemic. Together, we will heal as one.”
CNN Philippines published its news entitled “DOTr suggests scrapping MRT-3 rehab for COVID-19 response” yesterday.
The article is no longer available today. Meanwhile, the news outlet updated and published an article “DOTr proposes to reallocate funds for certain projects to aid COVID-19 response” an hour after DOTr issued its press statement.