Women outshine men as bus drivers
WHY can’t a woman be a bus driver?
Mharliesa Sansait shattered the stereotype that women can’t be bus drivers – seen by many as a man’s job – when she was hired along with 11 other women by Jam Liner.
Sansait told INQUIRER.net that she was a former overseas Filipino worker (OFW) but decided to leave the job abroad and return to the Philippines to work as a bus driver.
She said she used to work as a driver overseas but came back to the Philippines to try her luck.
“There is an opportunity here in the Philippines as a bus driver with the same wage abroad so I decided to come home,” she said in Filipino.
According to her, life abroad was difficult and the fact that she could only come home every two years has compounded her misery.
Unlike in the Philippines, she can visit her family every month.
From Jam Liner’s Cubao station to Sta. Rosa in Laguna, she said she drives with steady hands, watchful eyes, high presence of mind, especially when traversing along Edsa where daredevil motorists abound.
She said some people have doubts whether she can really drive, recalling that once she overheard a passenger complaining, “Naku, marunong ba ’yan?”
To dispel their fears, she said she let her driving do the talking.
Sansait said she was among the 11 female bus drivers who were trained and certified by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (Tesda).
She said she is happy when passengers looked at her with amusement. She said it was a sign they have confidence in her.
Her fellow lady bus driver Imelda Mendoza has the same story.
Mendoza said passengers are “proud” of her whenever they see her drive.
“It’s not easy but we can do it,” she said.
For passenger Abby Kalayag, she said “it’s cool” to see lady bus drivers on the road.”
“It’s safer when it’s a woman who’s behind the wheel. They are more cautious,” Kalayag said.
Emman Fernandez, meanwhile, said that indeed girls can do it.
“Kung ano ang kaya ng lalaki, kaya rin ng babae,” Fernandez said. AC
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