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Can Provincial Buses Enter Metro Manila? That's Finally Being Discussed

This will ease commuters' border-crossing pain.
by Joel Guinto
Sep 2, 2020
Photo/s: Jerome Ascaño
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Resuming provincial bus operations in Metro Manila is being discussed, an interior department official said Wednesday. If it pushes through, commuters can cross borders more easily for the first time in at least six months.

Currently, those who can move between Metro Manila and surrounding provinces for work, get down at border checkpoints if they don't have private cars or company shuttles. Public transport routes are restricted within cities, towns and regions.

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Buses, vans and jeeps from the provinces cannot enter Metro Manila and can only carry up to half capacity.

"'Yan po ay pinag-uusapan na ngayon sa IATF. Wala pa pong pinal na desisyon (That is being discussed in the IATF. There is no final decision yet)," Interior Usec. Jonathan Malaya told reporters.

"Antabayanan na lang po natin kung magkakadesisyon na ang IATF (Let's stand by for the IATF's decision," he said. The IATF is the Inter-Agency Task Force on COVID-19.

Provincial Bus Operators Association of the Philippines President Alex Yague earlier said some 14,000 of their members lost their jobs due to quarantine restrictions.

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