DOTr chief apologizes to inconvenienced commuters amid Holy Week rush
MANILA, Philippines — Department of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Arthur Tugade on Thursday apologized for the inconveniences experienced by commuters during the last workday of the Holy Week, admitting the “lingering problem” of the lack of available public utility vehicles (PUVs).
“Sa ngalan ng buong Kagawaran ng Transportasyon, ako ‘ho ay taos-puso at nagpapakumbabang humihingi ng pang-unawa at patawad sa ating mga kababayan na lubhang nahirapan sa kanila-kanilang mga biyahe pauwi, lalung-lalo na sa kahabaan ng EDSA Busway simula kahapon,” Tugade said in a statement.
(On behalf of the whole Department of Transportation, I am wholeheartedly asking for the understanding and forgiveness of our fellow Filipinos who struggled to commute on their way home, especially along the EDSA Busway starting yesterday.)
Photos and video clips on social media show an influx of commuters lined up along EDSA waiting for buses with the MRT-3 suspending its operations for its annual preventive maintenance.
“Batid po namin ang inconveniences na naidulot ng naging pagsasara ng MRT-3 para sa pagbibigay-daan sa annual preventive maintenance nito at ang naging epekto nito sa kakulangan ng supply ng magseserbisyong bus sa ating EDSA Carousel,” Tugade said.
(We recognize the inconvenience brought about by the closure of MRT-3 for our annual preventive maintainance and the lack of buses along the EDSA Carousel.)
“While we were on top of the situation, we admit that the lack of available public utility vehicles (PUVs) has been a lingering problem that we strive to resolve, not just during Holy Week season. At ito ‘ho ang patuloy naming ginagawan ng solusyon at inaayos [And we are continuing to solve and fix this],” he added.
Tugade assured that “what happened yesterday shall never happen again in the succeeding days.”
He said the DOTr will work to improve its services in its EDSA Busway, including augmenting the number of units servicing commuters.
“We will improve the service in our EDSA Busway, we will have bus augmentation and we will issue many provisional authority permits and we will have additional manpower to extend assistance to commuters ,” Tugade said in Filipino.
“Despite what happened, we will continue to find ways to ensure that the observance of Holy Week for our fellow Filipinos is orderly and peaceful,” he added.
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