by MEGS S. LUNN
The Ati-atihan town in the Province of Aklan is now in the process of making historical facts, something to talk about.
When one reaches the vicinity of Kalibo, coming from the eastern part of Aklan, he would certainly notice the heavy traffic even as he enters Barangay Estancia, until he reaches crossing Kalibo–Banga. If he is bound to the shopping area, he could see the sign posted at the Shell Gas Station that says, "NO LEFT TURN." This means, all vehicles coming from Banga or any other place from the east should not have a "U" turn going back to east, whilst that vehicles coming from shopping area or wet market always doing "LEFT TURN" right on that sign post, back to shopping area/wet market. Isn’t it obvious that the sign contradicts the vehicle driver’s way?
How about those people who are in green uniform? I could not see them, huh! Without wearing reflectors, they might be the first one to meet vehicular accident. Isn’t it? As per observation, they signal those drivers going to the wrong road of their desire. Not once but many times that the Kalibo Auxiliary Police (KAP) members are giving go signals toward the not supposed to be the route. What a shame! The drivers, instead, are having a bumper to bumper move just to pass that area especially during peak hours, that’s before office/school time and after office/school time. How bad!
On the other side, from the Western part, when a driver reaches Barangay Bulwang, he will certainly meet a heavy traffic in the early morning. Why? Simply because the Ati-atihan town of Kalibo passed certain ordinances disallowing the passenger jeeps/multicabs/tricycles/buses to retain their way and bring down their passengers especially students and workers in the nearby shopping area or town plaza making worst of the Kalibo tricycles to sting like bees at the back of every passenger vehicles coming down at the Oyo Torong Street.
It is worst than before. Passengers had to look for a companion of the same route before the tricycles would let them ride and bring them to their desired point. The other thing is the desire of every tricycle driver to get passengers. They are in clash as to have more passengers at a time. So, they also hurry, sometimes bumping other vehicles nearby. The Kalibo Bridge is simply not passable without having trouble with the very slow moving traffic in the morning and afternoon. Does Kalibo aspire to become a city or a messy?
The traffic enforcers assigned in the Kalibo main streets are even too ignorant of the traffic rules and regulations. One may ask why? Because they do not even know how to signal where to go direction and who are going to that point. Much to the other drivers’ and pedestrians’ dismay, they are not even given some sort of respect by some drivers who are on the rush and could not wait for the traffic officers’ very timid go signal.
This is quite a failure to the Local Government Unit of Kalibo. The people who pass through everyday have estimated time of arrival as to their destinations. However, they carry the traffic burden not because of the vehicles but that of the traffic enforcer themselves, tsk, tsk, tsk…
The people of Aklan are the most affected of their daily routine especially at the peak hours. The students suffer from being late. The workers too. And those who are going on an important event of their lives are delayed. They spend time that could be used to other activities if traffic in Kalibo is effectively managed.
This observation is based on my daily travel. Comparatively, I spend less time reaching my destinations two months ago. May this suggestion be heard by the people in uniform to be dedicated to their job. May this suggestion be heard by the Kalibo LGU officials concerned. The life of every person can be dependent on them. One wrong move and life maybe lost. So, is really the Kalibo KAPS a KAP or to be mopped?
We need traffic enforcers who can direct traffic effectively and efficiently. To prevent traffic accidents, to make our roads more passable safe to both person and property. Skillful traffic officers are necessary. We value life, we value property, we value time. We need time to save lives and property.
Amateur traffic officers has no place in the management of the flow of persons and vehicles in the Ati-Atihan town of Kalibo. /MP