Spox. Roque: Malacañang Backs Phased Re-Opening Of Metro Manila Transport Amid COVID-19

Spox. Roque: Malacañang Backs Phased Re-Opening Of Metro Manila Transport Amid COVID-19

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In a statement released last Sunday, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque reminded the public that although the economy is gradually being re-opened following Metro Manila’s transition to general community quarantine (GCQ), limited movement is still encouraged to avoid further transmission of COVID-19.

“We have to consider, (however), that Metro Manila, is still under General Community Quarantine; thus, the threat of COVID-19 still exists and is real. At this juncture, we still cannot let all modes of transportation to be on the streets. This will defeat the purpose of quarantine. Unless a vaccine or cure is available, we must not let our guards down,” stated Roque.

The DOTr implemented a gradual resumption of public transport in Metro Manila under two phases. From June 1 -21, 2020, public transportation included train and bus augmentation, taxis and TNVS, shuttle services, point-to-point buses, public utility buses and bicycles. Twenty-eight (28) point-to-point routes, with 268 bus units, provided access to commuters from peripheral areas such as Alabang, Bacoor, Bulacan, and Antipolo. Around 31,700 taxis and TNVs were likewise deployed, and are using cashless transactions and online payments for fare collection.

From June 22-30, 2020, modern public utility vehicles, and UV express will be added, following the hierarchy of public transportation under the GCQ guidelines as approved by the IATF.

Roque also acknowledged the concerns of the commuting public following the partial re-opening of mass transport last June 1.

“We heard the sentiments and understand the predicament of workers in commuting from their places of residence to their workplaces and vice-versa when we reopned the economy. The Department of Transportation opened eight (8) city bus routes last week and, upon the instruction of the President, will open three (3) more on Monday, June 8, and more rationalized routes in the next few days,” said Roque.

Roque also emphasized the government’s efforts to balance the country’s economy while ensuring the safety and protection of its people.

“Daily assessments are done on the transportation sector. The Government is trying to do more in order to help everyone. We also reiterate our appeal to the private sector to provide shuttle services to their employees. What the Administration is doing is balancing the need to revitalize the economy so that we can have livelihood and jobs while looking out for and protecting the health and safety of the public as well,” concluded Roque.

Read Roque’s full statement below:

We heard the sentiments and understand the predicament of workers in commuting from their places of residence to their workplaces and vice-versa when we reopened the economy.

The Department of Transportation opened eight (8) city bus routes last week and, upon the instruction of the President, will open three (3) more on Monday, June 8, and more rationalized routes in the next few days.

We have to consider, however, that Metro Manila, is still under General Community Quarantine; thus, the threat of COVID-19 still exists and is real. At this juncture, we still cannot let all modes of transportation to be on the streets. This will defeat the purpose of quarantine. Unless a vaccine or cure is available, we must not let our guards down.

The DOTr implemented a gradual, calibrated and partial resumption of public transport under two phases. From June 1 -21, 2020, public transportation included train and bus augmentation, taxis and TNVS, shuttle services, point-to-point buses, public utility buses and bicycles. Public utility buses, which originally were from Phase 2, were gradually put to Phase 1. Twenty-eight (28) point-to-point routes, with 268 bus units, provided access to commuters from peripheral areas such as Alabang, Bacoor, Bulacan, and Antipolo. Around 31,700 taxis and TNVs were likewise deployed, and are using cashless transactions and online payments for fare collection. In the case of health workers and medical frontliners, we have been continuously proving freed rides in almost 20 routes and 95 hospitals around Metro Manila. In fact, as of June 6, 2020, the DOTr Free Ride for Health Workers was able to reach 1,073,975 in terms of ridership nationwide. From June 22-30, 2020, modern public utility vehicles, and UV express will be added, following a hierarchy of public transportation.

Daily assessments are done on the transportation sector. The Government is trying to do more in order to help everyone. We also reiterate our appeal to the private sector to provide shuttle services to their employees. What the Administration is doing is balancing the need to revitalize the economy so that we can have livelihood and jobs while looking out for and protecting the health and safety of the public as well.

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