MMDA to recommend suspension of Maria Isabel Lopez’ license
Actress Maria Isabel Lopez may have escaped the horrendous traffic on Edsa on Saturday, but the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) isn’t letting her go scot-free after she removed the plastic barriers and used the lane designated for VIPs attending the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) summit.
On her Facebook account, Lopez appeared to have been proud of her pretending to be an Asean delegate when she traversed the southbound lane of Edsa with her car’s hazard lights turned on. She even admitted that she “removed the divider cones,” prompting those behind her to follow her lead.
“MMDA thinks I’m an official Asean delegate! If [you] can’t beat [them], join them!” Lopez said in her post, which she accompanied with two videos showing her breezing through traffic.
Her post also had the hashtags #nosticker, #leadership, #belikemaria and #pasaway (naughty).
MMDA spokesperson Celine Pialago said that what Lopez did was a “serious breach of security.”
“MMDA and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) will now recommend to the Land Transportation Office the suspension or cancellation of Maria Isabel Lopez’s license,” she told the Inquirer.
Traffic in both directions of the major thoroughfare nearly grounded to a halt on Saturday after the MMDA closed off at noon the two innermost lanes designated as Asean exclusive lanes.
While thousands of motorists and commuters were infuriated by the traffic gridlock, a number of netizens who saw Lopez’s post weren’t all too happy with what she did.
Remwel Gebaune said on the “Dash Cam Diaries Philippines” Facebook page that while he, too, was caught in heavy traffic, he did not think of breaking the law. “This is an example of [an] elitist mentality,” he said.
Lendi Peralta noted that Lopez should be ashamed of what she did, adding that it’s “people like her why Filipinos have no discipline when it comes to following traffic rules.”
LTFRB board member Aileen Lizada assailed Lopez, saying that the beauty queen “is not a good role model.”
“That lane has been the subject of a series of meetings of the security [group]. We are the host country, it’s a good thing that no traffic collision happened [there]. Otherwise, the Philippine government, particularly the MMDA will be hit [with criticisms] and not the beauty queen who is also a representative of the country,” Lizada said. /je
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