(File photo)

Newly-installed Puerto Princesa City Police Office (PPCPO) director Senior Superintendent Marion D. Balonglong assured they will not yet move to ban tricycles and pedicabs on national roads until the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) has made a decision on the city government’s request for exemption.

Balonglong gave the assurance during Monday’s session of the City Council after councilor Rolando Amurao, chairman of the transportation committee, informed him about an earlier request for the PPCPO to delay the implementation of the DILG order.

“Nakikiusap po kami ulit sa inyo kagaya nang pakiusap na ginawa namin kay outgoing city director Senior Supt. Ronnie Francis Cariaga na huwag muna ninyong ipatupad dito sa Puerto Princesa ang kautusan habang hindi pa kami handa,” he said.

(We are requesting again to you, like how we requested outgoing city director Senior Supt. Ronnie Francis Cariaga, not to implement the order while we are not yet ready.)

Amurao told Balonglong their request to the DILG for exemption has not received any reply or decision yet.

“‘Yon lang po muna siguro ang aming pansamantalang puwedeng i-refer sa inyo na huwag niyo munang ipatupad ang kautusang ito habang hindi pa rin sinasagot ng DILG ang aming resolusyon para i-exempt ang Puerto Princesa sa pagpapatupad ng kautusan na tanggalin totally ang tricycels sa ating national highway. Sana po mapagbigyan niyo kami. Pupuwede po ba ‘yon?” Amurao said to Balonglong.

(This is what we want to refer to you to not yet implement the order because the DILG has not yet sent any decision regarding our resolution for Puerto Princesa City to be exempted from the law the will totally ban tricycles on the national highway. We hope you will allow this. Is it all right?)

“Pupuwede po ‘yon, sir (It can be done, sir)” replied Balonglong.

Earlier, Amurao told Palawan News that the PPCPO was ordered by DILG Sec. Eduardo Año to already implement Memorandum Circular No. 2007-01 which bans tricycle and bicycle-pedicab operations on national highways and prohibits overloading of passengers and goods.

The City Council approved a resolution requesting the DILG to exempt the city from the directive, which was sent to Año in October last year.

Amurao said he is thankful that the new PPCPO director agreed to support the City Council’s appeal.

Amurao also informed Balonglong about City Ordinance No. 383-2017, which allows tricycles, motorcycles, and public transports the use of the outer lanes.

In relation to this, he also campaigned for Balonglong’s support in ensuring these vehicles remain only in the outer lanes of the national highways.

“Masaya tayo, salamat doon sa kaniyang sinabing ‘yon. At sana ‘yong DILG maglabas na rin sila ng kanilang stand. Ano ba  talaga, pagbibigyan ba nila tayo o hindi? (We are happy about it, we are thankful about what he said. And we hope that the DILG will already issue its stand about this. What is it going to be, are you agreeing or not?),” Amurao told Palawan News.

Meanwhile, Balonglong said he also gave the same consideration to tricycles on national highways in Las Piñas where he served as chief of police for almost two years.

He said tricycles are really prohibited in national highways, but he understands that drivers also need to earn income for their families and sending their children to school.

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