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Chan to IATF: Allow backriding for family members

By: Rosalie O. Abatayo - Reporter/CDN Digital | May 17,2020 - 08:21 PM
Lapu-Lapu City Mayor Junard Chan is appealing to the IATF to allow backriding of private motorcycles especially with the city now under general community quarantine. | CDN Digital file photo

Lapu-Lapu City Mayor Junard Chan is appealing to the IATF to allow backriding of private motorcycles especially with the city now under general community quarantine. | CDN Digital file photo

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Lapu-Lapu City Mayor Junard Chan is appealing to the national Interagency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) to reconsider its policy on disallowing backriding in motorcycles amid the implementation of the general community quarantine (GCQ) in the city.

Chan, in a live-streamed statement, said he sympathized with the public’s opinion that riding the motorcycles of their loved ones or family members was safer than getting onboard public utility vehicles.

Chan said he was writing a letter to the IATF to formally appeal the city’s position on allowing backriders for family members in view of the city’s transition to GCQ.

With several businesses already reopening, the mayor said the number of authorized public transport vehicles in the city might not be enough to cater to the volume of workers who would be going out to report to work.

“Usa kini sa dapat nila nga pagatan-awon kay dili ako mosugot nga magpunsisok ang mga katawhan nga magpaabot sa kilid sa kadalanan aron makasakay. Mas dako kini nga risgo sa ilang panlawas,” Chan said.

(This is one factor that they should look into because I would not allow a crowd of people waiting on our streets just so they can take a ride to their work. This is risky for their health.)

Chan said he would lobby the policy to IATF with the assurance that the local government unit would take accountability in determining who would be authorized to carry backriders and the limitation as to where they could travel.

Earlier, Chan announced that the city would be opening its application for “angkas cards” that would authorize its owner to carry a family member as his or her backrider.

READ: Angkas card in Lapu to be applied online put on hold

“Apan, nakadawat ako og tawag gikan sa LTO kaganihang buntag, nagpasabot kanako nga hugtanon gihapon nga gibawal sa IATF ang pag-angkas. Lakip sa mga guidelines sa IATF nga dili pa pwede nga mabalik ang angkas bisan na kung immediate family pa: maasawa, anak o ba kaha, manag-uyab,” said Chan.

(But I received a call from LTO this morning, telling me that having backriders is still strictly prohibited by the IATF. Included in the IATF guidelines is that backriding (angkas) or backriders will not be allowed even if these are immediate family whether it be the wife or husband, one’s child or even a girlfriend or a boyfriend.)

Without the IATF’s lifting of the policy, Chan said he would be bound to implement the prohibition of motorcycle backriding in his city.

“Dili usa mapadayon ang atong angkas card. Sundon nato ang pagbawal sa mo angkas sa mga motorsiklo. Gusto man nato nga mabalik kini pero wala kitay mahimo kay mao man ang mando sa kahitas-an,” he said.

(We’ll put on hold the angkas card. Let’s just follow for now the prohibition on backriding of motorcycles. We want it to be back but that is the order of the higher-ups.)

However, Chan said they would continue to appeal for the lifting of the anti-backrider policy as he viewed it as a safer means of transportation over the public transport./dbs

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