Gordon and Fernando dispute over female urinals
In a press conference held yesterday, January 4, running mates Senator Richard Gordon and former MMDA Chairman Bayani Fernando expressed their opposing stands on the Metropolitan Manila Development Authory's (MMDA) plan to put up urinals for women, reports the Inquirer.
The MMDA earlier announced that putting female urinals along EDSA would be one of their first projects this year. MMDA General Manager Robert Nacianceno told GMA News that the proposed female urinal design would be slightly different from previously installed male urinals; the female version will be more private, supplied with a light source, disinfectant, and water, and will have their own maintenance personnel assigned to them.
Gordon said that the MMDA's proposal was feasible, citing his previous efforts to install pay female toilets in Olongapo City where he served as mayor for two years. The Inquirer reports that the said pay toilets also provided revenues for the public market personnel maintaining them.
Fernando was not too keen with partner's ideas though, recalling his observations in Sweden--the only country to install public urinals for women. Fernando noted that their units were littered with all kinds of human waste, according to the Philippine Star. He further argued that it would be difficult to sustain such a project in the long run. Moreover, the former chairman said that the private outdoor cubicles might also pose as possible venue for misdemeanor saying, "People can do anything inside the covered urinals."
Gabriella party list representative Luzviminda Ilagan had previously expressed her concern on the matter when she told GMA News that these cubicles might expose women to unnecessary risks and possible scandals if they choose to use them.
When the Inquirer asked Gordon about their short disagreement on the subject, the senator quickly quipped, "We are friends, but we also disagree."