The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) was directed by National Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana to utilize military assets to help transport individuals who are exempted in the ongoing enhanced community quarantine being implemented.
“Reports reached our office on the plight of workers and employees stranded from work, as well as those health workers and those in the exempted group of the ban who could not go to their places of work on Day One of the Enhanced Community Quarantine in Luzon,” Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said.
“We immediately communicated such concern to the Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Delfin Lorenzana and the latter swiftly directed the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) to bring out their army trucks to ferry those who are stranded, particularly health workers and other individuals exempted from the ban, so they can be safely brought to their places of work and their homes after work,” Panelo noted.
Panelo added that the problem was also brought to the attention of Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and its Chairman Danilo Lim who gave an immediate positive response.
“Chairman Lim has already coordinated with different bus companies, especially Wescapboa, a transport cooperative, and the West Cavite Philippine Bus Operators Association, as well as the Jasper Jean Bus Liner. They have started to send out their buses after marking the same with the official logo of the MMDA to put law enforcement agents on notice of their purpose of free public service in favor of those exempted from home quarantine,” Panelo added.
“We commend these bus companies for their bayanihan spirit. The same commendation goes to AVIS Philippines for its offer to transport outbound passengers who intend to depart the country in going to the airport and inbound passengers to their respective homes before the expiration of the 72-hour grace period from the effectivity of the Enhanced Community Quarantine. It is now in coordination with the MMDA and the Philippine National Police (PNP) to consider its offer of help,” Panelo added.
Under the enhance community quarantine, public transportation is cancelled.