In October, President Duterte ordered jeepney operators to either modernize their public-utility vehicles or keep them off the road. He sounded extremely serious.
Indeed, he is. Tomorrow, January 8, the Inter-Agency Council for Traffic (I-ACT) will start singling out jeepneys that either look rickety or belch out black smoke. The campaign, called “Tanggal Bulok, Tanggal Usok” (which translates to “no more junk, no more smoke”), is said to be the initial step toward the government’s PUV modernization program.
According to Department of Transportation communications director Goddes Hope Oliveros-Libiran, monitoring activities will take place on EDSA, Commonwealth Avenue, Marcos Highway and Quezon Boulevard.
Elmer Argaño of I-ACT, through a statement sent by Oliveros-Libiran, says flagged jeepneys will not be impounded but will merely be served a warning. “Tomorrow is basically a warning shot,” he explains. “If we catch them again, then we shall already issue a summons to them, possibly leading to the suspension or the cancellation of their licenses and franchises should their explanation be unsatisfactory.”
I-ACT is made up of government agencies whose duties are related to vehicle traffic. These include the Land Transportation Office, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority, the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board, and the Highway Patrol Group, among others.
We suppose private citizens can help this campaign by taking photos or videos of jeepneys that are obviously no longer roadworthy.