A plan of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) to ban provincial buses from entering EDSA through the closure of their terminals along the major metropolitan road was supposed to have been carried out one month or two before the May elections. A cold, cynical calculation, that the move may push irate provincial commuters into voting for the political opposition, forced the agency to suspend the plan.
A legal question filed by the Ako Bicol congressmen and Albay representatives before the High Court, a case still pending with the Supreme Court, added to the delay of the implementation.
With the fear of an electoral backlash over the plan, the MMDA has teamed up with the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) to go around the legal challenge on the MMDA’s powers to unilaterally close down provincial bus terminals along EDSA. The MMDA asked the LTFRB to just cut short the franchises of all provincial buses, unilaterally and without public hearings, to give legal cover to the plan. The LTFRB, according to a news report, readily said OK.