(Manila) The Metropolitan Manila Development Agency (MMDA) announced early Monday that it will no longer pretend that the metropolis’ traffic congestion problems can still be fixed and will instead begin working on “alternative coping mechanisms.”
MMDA Assistant General Manager John Frederico explained that the agency is currently exploring the use of marijuana as a way of coping with getting stuck in traffic. The agency will also push for the legalization of the drug for use as a coping aid for drivers stuck in heavy traffic jams.
“We all have to go through heavy traffic,” Frederico told reporters, “but we don’t have to go through it frustrated or angry.”
The MMDA’s marijuana proposal comes a few days after a United States agency, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), released its findings that driving after smoking marijuana does not increase the risk of getting into an accident.
Cannabis has a long way to go before it is legalized, however, as many lawmakers remain conservative in their view of the drug.
“Marijuana is dangerous,” Representative Omar Cabinbuyan said in reaction to the MMDA statement, “that’s why I stick to alcohol. You don’t hear people getting killed because of alcohol consumption.”
Still, Frederico insists that the MMDA is set to finish its studies and then make recommendations to congress about legalization.
“You can’t force a square peg into a round hole,” the MMDA official said, “Or a square leg into a round pole? A square peg into a square hole? But relax.”