LTFRB opens new routes; allows additional 4,400 PUVs in Metro Manila next week

Aileen Cerrudo   •   April 8, 2021   •   631

MANILA, Philippines—The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) is eyeing to allow more public utility vehicles (PUVs) in Metro Manila beginning next week.

In a virtual press briefing on Thursday (April 8), LTFRB National Capital Region (NCR) Director Zona Tamayo said the agency aims to open 250 new routes and allow 4,400 units of traditional jeepneys and buses to enter and ply within Metro Manila.

However, for provincial buses, Tamayo clarified they will still be subjected to the approval of concerned local government units (LGUs).

Nasa LGU po iyon kung papasukin or ire-resume ang operations ng ating mga provincial buses (It is up to the LGUs if they will allow or resume operations of provincial buses), she said.

Based on the latest data of LTFRB, 76% of public transport vehicles have already been allowed to operate since June last year.

Meanwhile, the LTFRB reiterated the need for operators to follow minimum health and safety protocols to help prevent the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

Mga bata, bawal pa ring gumala maliban kung outdoor exercise – Malakanyang

Robie de Guzman   •   October 21, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Nagpaalala ang Malakanyang sa publiko na bawal pa ring gumala ang mga menor de edad sa gitna ng pagluluwag ng COVID-19 alert level sa Metro Manila.

Nasa Alert Level 3 ang Metro Manila hanggang sa katapusan ng Oktubre ngunit giit ni Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, bawal pa ring lumabas ng bahay para mamasyal ang mga menor de edad dahil hindi pa sila bakunado laban sa COVID-19.

Aniya, maaari lamang lumabas ang mga bata kung ito ay para sa pangunahing pangangailangan at outdoor exercise.

“Para sa menor edad, bawal pa rin po ang gala ng mga kabataan except po for outdoor exercises, individual outdoor exercises,” ani Roque.

Sa ilalim ng Alert Level 3, mas maraming establisimiyento ang pinapayagang mag-operate sa limitadong kapasidad.

Ayon naman kay Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) chairperson Benhur Abalos, napagkasunduan ng mga alkalde sa Metro Manila na payagan ang pagbiyahe ng mga bata pero dapat ay kasama ang kanilang mga magulang o guardian, alinsunod sa panuntunan ng lokal na pamahalaan.

Dapat rin ay may kinalaman sa basic necessities ang lakad at dapat ay nakasunod sa public health protocols.

“Ang pagbiyahe sa interzonal sa kalakhang Maynila ay pinapayagan at pwedeng lagyan ng rasonableng restrictions ng mga local government unit,” ani Abalos.

“Ang kondisyon po na napagkasunduan ng mga alkalde, ay ang mga menor de edad ay pwedeng bumiyahe provided kasama sila ng kanilang mga magulang or ng isang adult na guardian, maski hindi po bakunado,” dagdag pa niya.

Maaari ding pumunta sa mga mall ang mga bata kasama ang kanilang mga magulang o guardian kung magpapa-check up o kaya ay mag-a-avail ng mga pangunahing serbisyo o pangangailangan.

Quezon City allows minors to visit Quezon Memorial Circle

Robie de Guzman   •   October 21, 2021

Minors aged 17 and below are now allowed to go to Quezon Memorial Circle, the Quezon City government said.

In an advisory, the city government said that minors will now be allowed to take a stroll in the park provided that they are accompanied by their parent or guardian at all times.

It, however, said that the park will only accommodate up to 30 percent of its capacity.

The Metro Manila Council (MMC) earlier said that the intrazonal and interzonal travel of minors is now allowed as long as they are accompanied by adults.

The easing of travel restrictions for minors follows the government’s move to place Metro Manila under COVID-19 Alert Level 3 from October 16 to 31.

Under Alert Level 3, more establishments have been allowed to resume operations at 30 percent capacity for fully vaccinated individuals, and 50 percent outdoor capacity, provided that all employees are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Increased police visibility ordered in NCR public areas

Robie de Guzman   •   October 19, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Police General Guillermo Eleazar on Tuesday said he has ordered all unit commanders in the National Capital Region (NCR) to increase police visibility in public areas following the downgrading of the COVID-19 Alert Level in the region.

In a statement, Eleazar said the directive was in response to the Department of Health’s (DOH) appeal for the continued implementation of the public health protocols after a number of people flocked to malls, churches, and other areas during the first weekend of placing NCR under Alert Level 3.

It was also in compliance with the order of Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año on the matter, he added.

“Nauunawaan namin ang pagkabahala ng ating mga kasamahan sa Department of Health at sa medical community patungkol sa mga report na ipinakita kung saan nagdagsaan ang mga tao sa mga pasyalan, malls at iba pang mga lugar noong nakaraang weekend,” Eleazar said.

DOH officials and some health experts earlier expressed concerns over what they describe was an apparent complacency on the part of the public when they go out of their homes to take advantage of the easing of restrictions in the metropolis.

In some parks and churches, it was apparent that some people failed to observe the protocols for their safety despite repeated appeals from the marshals.

“Kasama sa aking kautusan ang coordination sa ating mga LGUs sa Metro Manila upang maayos na maipatupad ang minimum public health safety protocols at ibang pang mga restriction na ipapatupad sa NCR,” Eleazar said.

While he welcomed the easing of restrictions in the capital region, the PNP chief said the public should remain vigilant and compliant to the health and safety protocols set by the government against COVID-19.

“Natutuwa kami sa PNP na kahit paano ay bumabalik na sa normal ang sitwasyon sa ating bansa subalit hindi dapat maging dahilan ito para tayo ay maging kampante at balewalain ang health safety protocols dahil kung hindi, ang panandaliang kaligayahan na ating nararamdaman ngayon ay mauuwi na naman sa matagal na lockdown,” he added.

The NCR will be under Alert Level 3 until October 31.

The national government has also expanded the implementation of the COVID-19 Alert Level System to some areas in the country beginning Oct. 20.

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