PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte has signed an executive order (EO) that will abolish the agency tasked to revive the Pasig River.

The presidential palace yesterday released EO 93 dated Nov. 8, which will axe the Pasig River Rehabilitation Commission (PRRC) created in 1999.

In September, Mr. Duterte asked Congress to abolish the body that had been marred by corruption allegations. The president later fired Executive Director Jose Antonio E. Goitia for alleged corruption.

Mr. Duterte also complained that the Pasig River had not improved and the government was wasting money paying PRRC officials.

Under the order, the agency’s power will be transferred to other agencies such as the Manila Bay Task Force, Environment department, Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and Public Works department.

The task force will be in charge of the Pasig River Rehabilitation master plan, which would “harness the Pasig River’s potential for transportation, recreation and tourism purposes while undertaking the rehabilitation and restoration of its marine life,” according to the order.

The Environment department will ensure compliance with laws on proper drainage and monitor dumping violations.

The Public Works department and MMDA will remove infrastructure and other encroachments that violate the Urban Development and Housing Act of 1992.

The newly created Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development will head the relocation of informal settlers along the edge of the polluted river. — Gillian M. Cortez