Labella asked to lift restrictions vs all traditional jeepneys in city

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THE Cebu City Jeepney Task Force (JTF) asked Mayor Edgardo Labella to open all routes of traditional public utility jeepneys (TPUJs) in the city.

City Councilor James Anthony Cuenco, in a letter to Labella dated March 16, 2021, indicated that on December 7, 2020, an assessment meeting was conducted to assess the City’s Balik Pasada Program.

It was attended by Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board 7 Director Eduardo Montealto Jr., representatives of the City Transportation Office and the traffic enforcement unit of the Cebu City Police Office.

During the meeting, Cuenco, who chairs the JTF, said Montealto recommended reopening all the routes in the city to address the increasing demand for public transportation as more businesses open and more workers report to work.

The City Government has opened 37 TPUJs routes since October of which nine are inter-city TPUJs routes from the cities of Mandaue and Talisay.

Cuenco said they also found the Balik Pasada Program to be “generally performing well.”

“In the aforementioned meeting, the Balik Pasada Program was assessed to be generally performing well, with no TPUJ unit or driver apprehensions from our law enforcement and traffic agencies,” he said.

This was one of the factors that led to the recommendation to open more TPUJ routes.

Since the TPUJs were given the green light to operate in October, Cuenco said he received requests from other TPUJ drivers and operators to reopen their respective routes.

Cuenco said many drivers are optimistic that the City will address their concerns so they can also start earning a living.

Labella has yet to issue a statement regarding the JTF’s request.

Meanwhile, the JTF reminded TPUJ drivers and operators to continue implementing health protocols. (JJL)