Fate of angkas, habal-habal now under House review
The move to legalize habal-habal (motorcycles-for-hire), also known as angkas, is now being reviewed by the Committee of Transportation in the House of Representatives.
In a post on his official Facebook page, Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña announced that House Bill No. 6909, filed by Cebu City North District Representative Raul del Mar, is now in the hands of the committee’s technical working group.
“The status of the bill is that it is pending with the technical working group of the Committee of Transportation and is awaiting consolidation,” said Osmeña.
House Bill No. 6909 is co-authored by Cebu City South District Representative, Rodrigo ‘Bebot’ Abellanosa.
Both Del Mar and Abellanosa are Osmeña’s political allies under the Bando Osmeña Pundok Kauswagan (BOPK).
Osmeña also posted a copy of the proposal, which stressed the need for a law to legalize habal-habal not only to provide a convenient, alternative mode of transportation but also to ensure the safety of the riding public.
“It is of common knowledge that in cities, municipalities, and barangays in the country, there is a proliferation of motorcycles-for-hire known as habal-habal or angkas has been considered as the most convenient and cheapest means of transportation of the residents therein for lack of other means of transportation,” the proposal’s explanatory note read.
“The amendment of Section 458(1)(vi) of Republic Act No. 7160-Local Government Code and Section 7 (c) Republic Act No. 4136 – Land Transportation Code will resolve the existing inadequacies in our laws and shall promote the safety and welfare of people who patronage motorcycles-for-hire,” it added.
This is not the first proposal on legalizing habal-habal that was lodged by a Cebuano legislator.
Aside from Del Mar and Abellanosa, another Cebuano lawmaker has also previously filed before the lower chamber of Congress a bill to legalize habal-habal operations.
In his capacity as former congressman, representing Alliance for Nationalism and Democracy (ANAD) Partylist, now Cebu City Councilor Pastor ‘Jun’ Alcover Jr. filed House Bill No. 6046 in 2012, with the same goal of recognizing motorcycle as a legal mode of public transportation.
Four years later, in 2017, Alcover also proposed before the city council to regulate habal-habal operations in Cebu City but it was junked after the Committee on Laws and Reviews reported that the council has no authority over it, with the absence of a national law providing such mandate. /rcg
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