Manila’s ‘Oplan Libreng Sakay’ Provides Free Rides Amid Transport Strike

Manila, Philippines – Over 200 passengers in the City of Manila have benefitted from the “Oplan Libreng Sakay,” a free ride service initiated by the local government amid the ongoing transport strike by jeepney operators and drivers.

According to Philippines News Agency, spokesperson for Manila Mayor Honey Lacuna Pangan, a total of 227 individuals have been serviced by the initiative as of 12:30 p.m. Monday.

The Manila Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (MDRRMO), Manila Police District (MPD), and Manila Traffic and Parking Bureau (MTPB) have collectively deployed 122 vehicles on standby to assist commuters affected by the strike. These vehicles have the combined capacity to accommodate over 1,000 passengers. The situational report indicates that 53 passengers have been served on the Guadalupe-Amasista route and 69 on the Quezon Boulevard-Cubao route by MDRRMO vehicles. Additionally, MPD vehicles have provided rides to 105 commuters between Quezon Boulevard and Cubao.

The command center for Oplan Libreng Sakay, located at the Kartilya, is monitoring the affected routes and providing necessary assistance, especially during rush hour. Mayor Lacuna has instructed that the program should not hinder public transport vehicles that are not participating in the strike from earning their income. This action comes as the transport group Pagkakaisa ng mga Samahan ng Tsuper at Operator Nationwide commenced a three-day transport strike to protest the government’s consolidation deadline for public utility vehicles.