Full-face motorcycle helmets, bonnets banned in Rizal municipality
MANILA, Philippines – Motorcycle riders in the municipality of Morong, Rizal, are not allowed to wear full-face helmets and bonnets that conceal their faces, according to a memorandum order by Mayor Armando San Juan.
The order, dated June 2, says: "Concealment of one's face while travelling and moving around our area of jurisdiction is subject to inspection of authorities in Morong, Rizal."
According to municipal administrator Danilo Mendoza, the order is meant to protect the lives of the general public. He cited the death of barangay captain Roger Canios, who was shot in the head by an unidentified suspect who fled on a motorcycle.
Wearing motorcycle helmets, Mendoza said, is becoming ironic because they are used to protect the safety not of the riders or the citizens but of the killers.
Even if Republic Act 10054 or the Motorcycle Helmet Act of 2009 mandates all motorcycle riders to wear a standard helmet, Mendoza said that the helmets are being used to conceal both the identities of the riders and their intention of attacking public officials.
“Dito sa ’min, nakita ni Mayor na instead maka-protect mula sa accidents, which is the real purpose of 10054, instead 'yun (helmets) pa nagiging protection ng criminals in doing their criminal acts,” Mendoza told Rappler.
(Here, the Mayor saw that, instead of protecting the people from accidents, which is the real purpose of [Republic Act] 10054, the helmets give protection to the criminals in doing their criminal acts.)
After inspection and police find nothing suspicious with the motorcycle rider, the motorist is free to go, Mendoza said.
The Morong ordinance is similar to the “no helmet” policy in parts of Bulacan.
A councilor in Tuguegarao City has also raised concerns about the use of motorcycle helmets by criminals, citing the threat of crime and extrajudicial killings. – Rappler.com
Kaela Malig is a Rappler intern.
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