CDO councilor, ex-village exec ask court to stop enforcement of bike barrier policy | Inquirer News

CDO councilor, ex-village exec ask court to stop enforcement of bike barrier policy

/ 07:51 PM August 08, 2020

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY——-Two local personalities have asked a local court on Friday, Aug. 7, to stop the implementation of a national policy requiring the installation of barriers on motorcycles as a condition to allow pillion riding.

The petition was filed at the Regional Trial Court Branch 41, by Cagayan de Oro city councilor Reuben Daba and former Barangay 16 chair Walter Kiunisala.

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Daba and Kiunisala, in their petition, said the protective barrier poses a hazard to the riders, exposing the lives of those who rely on motorcycles for transportation and livelihood at risk.

“Motorcycle experts have already pointed out that not only is it unsafe and untested, it is also an unnecessary cost,” the petitioners pointed out.

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They said this regulation crafted by the national Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) is “anti-poor for it would be an added expense to the household.”

The policy, which took effect on August 1, was meant to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, according to the IATF.

The petitioners also questioned why the IATF allowed jeepneys and other public utility vehicles that carry multiple passengers to return to the streets if safety is the underlying reason for the insistence on the policy.

“Why does it allow PUJs or PUVs to ply their routes as there would be a greater chance that one would get infected in such a close or cramped space with all sorts of passengers with only a thin, flimsy, and transparent sheet or acetate for cover,” they said.

“There is also the issue of re-circulated air in air-conditioned public transport vehicles. While that of a motorcycle, there is only the spouse or partner that the driver comes into contact or interact with during the ride,” they added.

In addition, the petitioners argued that installing a barrier between the riders is not necessary since they live in the same household. Pillion riding, according to the IATF policy, is only allowed for couples that live in the same household.

“There is actually no need to install it as couples are regularly exposed to each other anyway,” they said.

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The petitioners have also attached a copy of a July 27 City Council resolution urging the IATF to reconsider the policy.

Lawyer James Judith, the petitioners’ legal counsel, said they are urging other individuals and groups who are affected by the barrier policy to take the same action in their respective areas.

“This is just the beginning. We hope others will follow suit. We started this to show that we can do something,” Judith said.

/MUF
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TAGS: bike barrier, Cagayan de Oro, pillion riding
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