SOURCE: Press and Public Affairs Bureau
SPEAKER Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez on Monday said the House of Representatives and Malacañang have joined hands to provide 100 buses to help Metro Manila commuters affected by the week-long strike launched by transport groups opposing the government’s jeepney modernization program.
The transport strike pushed through despite President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr.’s call for the Department of Transportation (DoTR) to revisit the program’s timetable and implementation.
“Through the joint effort of the House of Representatives and Malacañang, we have fielded 100 buses to augment the number of vehicles provided by local governments and other government agencies that would provide free rides to affected commuters,” Speaker Romualdez said.
“It’s our commuters who would suffer the most from this transport strike. Cognizant of their difficult situation, have taken this joint initiative with Malacanang to ensure stranded commuters will have available rides to their work or home,” he added.
Speaker Romualdez said the vehicles were assigned to the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA), which would decide where the buses would be deployed.
Based on reports reaching him, Romualdez said some 1,380 persons were already served by the first 46 buses that were deployed by MMDA to service various routes in the metropolis between 8:35 to 11:01 of Monday morning.
As per MMDA's report, Romualdez said the first batch of 46 buses were deployed in the following routes:
-Zobel-Roxas-Dulo (Sta. Ana)
If necessary, Speaker Romualdez said they would field additional vehicles to provide free rides for the duration of the transport strike.
He said it is unfortunate that despite the President’s call for a review of the jeepney modernization program, the transport groups still proceeded with the planned strike.
“President Marcos has shown that he is sympathetic to the issues raised by certain transport groups over the jeepney modernization program. I appeal to those concerned to engage the government in a sincere dialogue to resolve this issue,” Romualdez said.
“Kawawa po naman ang ating mga commuters na sila ang laging naiipit at nahihirapan tuwing magkakaroon ng ganitong transport strike,” he added. (END)