CEBU City Councilor Pastor Alcover Jr. clarified that his proposed ordinance to regulate the operation of habal-habal or motorcycle taxis in the city will empower barangays to control these forms of transport in their communities.
Alcover also assured that his move is not a duplication of the plan of Mayor Tomas Osmeña to recognize and regulate these vehicles’ operations.
Alcover said he decided to introduce the proposal again after he observed several concerns involving the operations of habal-habal, which include the fare rates and safety of drivers and passengers.
“The proposed ordinance seeks to give power to the barangay council to control the operation of habal-habal. All the habal-habal drivers should go through the barangay and present the permits, including their driver’s license and registration of the motorcycle, so they will be accredited,” Alcover said.
In 2016, Alcover also sponsored a draft ordinance, which sought to grant a franchise to habal-habal drivers but it was scrapped because it went beyond the council’s powers.
After what he said was a thorough review, Alcover said he decided to improve the measure and pushed for it again. The proposed ordinance is pending before the council’s committee on laws, for comments and recommendations.
Not like Angkas, though
Alcover said that when he was still a party-list congressman, he sponsored a bill to legalize the operation of motorcycle taxis, but it did not prosper after his disqualification from the House of Representatives.
Alcover said City cannot follow the system of Angkas, a mobile booking application for motorcycles, because some of the passengers in the mountain barangays don’t have access to the internet.
For his part, Osmeña said he already brought the matter up with the telecommunications networks. (RVC)