NTF, DOTr approves resumption of motorcycle taxis

Ruben Manahan IV
·2-min read

Soon, motorcycle taxis will again be plying the country's Metropolitan areas after the National Task Force Against COVID-19 (NTF) recently approved the implementing guidelines.

Based on the six-page NTF Memorandum Circular 3, motorcycle taxi operators who will comply with the approved guidelines will be permitted to resume operations. The said memorandum—signed by NTF Chair Delfin Lorenzana and his co-chair Eduardo Ano—was issued November 4.

During an online press conference, NTF Secretary Vince Dizon said that the guidelines are expected to reduce the risk of transmission of the dreaded Covid-19 virus. “Transport should be safe and not compromise the guidelines that prevent COVID-19 transmission,” he said.

“These motorcycle taxi guidelines—with the Department of Transportation (DOTR), the Department of Health (DOH), the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB), and other partners even in the private sector—can increase the safety of our public.”

MC taxi motorcycle taxi NTF
MC taxi motorcycle taxi NTF

Transportation Assistant Secretary Mark Steven Pastor, who was also present during the virtual conference, explained that the economy is heavily banking on transportation and mobility.

“This is a good step of our opening up the economy, kasi magkakaroon ng modality sa ating public transportation. Isusulong po natin ang additional modes of mobility to also reduce travel time. Lalo na po't may extended pilot run, keeping in mind na may safe re-launching ng pilot implementation gamit ang mga safety guidelines.”

Last January, the pilot study was extended by the Motorcycle Taxi Service Inter-Agency Technical Working Group (TWG). The extension was meant to help lawmakers create a law that would allow motorcycle taxis to ply the country’s thoroughfares legally.

Meanwhile, Angkas Chief Transport Advocate George Royeca lauded the the government’s action that led to the resumption of their operations.

"We thank and laud the government, the Department of Transportation (DOTr), the National Task Force Against COVID-19 (NTF), and the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF)," he said.

"With their support, we have been able to advocate for the many stakeholders who were heavily impacted by mobility restrictions.Talaga pong concerted effort ito para sa lahat ng modes of transportation para po sa paglilingkod natin sa taong bayan," Royeca added.

Angkas
Angkas

LTO Assistant Secreary Edgar Galvante said that Angkas, as well as Joyride and MoveIt, will be invited to convene within this week to ensure everyone’s compliance on the guidelines such as the use of an NTF-approved barrier, cashless payment, use of own helmets with full-face visor, facemasks.

Aside from that, all participating bikers must secure professional license and need to submit health updates prior to work hours. The sooner that the companies can comply—as Galvante emphasized—the earlier they can resume operations.

Photos from Ruben D. Manahan IV, Angkas

Also read:

TWG: MC Taxi Pilot run cap for 'Monitoring' Only

UP-CPH study says MC Taxi ops could be safe for new norm mobility

DOTr throws support for motorcycle taxi service resumption