More than 4,000 people were caught and slapped with penalties for littering the streets of Metro Manila during the first quarter of the year.
The Metro Manila Development Authority recorded a total of 4,316 apprehensions during series of anti-littering operations in the areas of Monumento, Cubao, Ortigas district, Epifanio de los Santos Avenue, Taft Avenue, Guadalupe, North-EDSA, Gil Puyat Avenue and other parts of the metropolis from January to March.
In a report, the MMDA Health, Public Safety and Environmental Police Office stated that 965 litterbugs were apprehended in the month of January, 1,053 in February and 2,298 last month.
Of the numbers, 1,487 violators settled the administrative fine while 32 offenders rendered an eight-hour community service.
MMDA chairman Danilo Lim said the continuous enforcement of the anti-littering law is in line with the agency’s mandate to uphold the health and sanitation of the metropolis and its residents.
“We are calling on the public to refrain from littering in the streets. Remember that garbage, no matter how small or big it is, end up in the drainage that contributes to flooding. Proper garbage disposal is everyone’s responsibility,” said Lim.
Top waste materials thrown by offenders are candy wrappers, cigarette butts, papers, and plastics.
Anti-littering teams are composed of environmental enforcers responsible for the enforcement of the provisions of the MMDA Regulation No.96-009 or anti-littering law that prohibits littering, dumping and throwing any kind of waste in open or public places.
During operations, they issue environmental violation receipts (EVRs) to persons caught violating the anti-littering law, with a corresponding fine of P500 or community service.
The MMDA also reminds the public of the stiffer consequence should violators ignore EVRs.
Under the rules, violators are given three days to settle their penalties. Those who fail to settle their violation will be sent summon to comply. If the violator ignores the summon a case shall be filed against him/her in court.
Names of charged violators may also be forwarded to the National Bureau of Investigation for inclusion on its alarm list unless they pay the penalty for their infractions.