189 e-tricycles hired in Manila to ferry health workers to hospitals

Rambo Talabong
The electric tricycles will bring health workers straight to the hospitals they work at

HEALTH WORKERS. Security personnel check on the isolation rooms intended for Patients Under Investigation (PUI) of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) at the newly opened Manila Infectious Disease Control Center at the 10th floor of the Sta. Ana Hospital in Manila on March 8, 2020. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

MANILA, Philippines – The Manila City Government and the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) have hired 189 electric tricycle (e-trike) drivers to service health workers during the Luzon lockdown, Mayor Isko Moreno announced Thursday, March 19.

“189 e-trikes will be deployed for frontliners in Manila, may trabaho at may sweldo (with salaries),” Moreno said during a Facebook live address.

Why does this matter? Public transportation has been restricted since President Rodrigo Duterte declared a lockdown over the entire island region of Luzon, in a drastic effort to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus in the Philippines.

The e-tricycles, according to Manila Public Information Office chief Julius Leonen, will ferry health workers straight to the hospitals they work at in the capital.

Different from Vico Sotto? The collaboration of the local government and Manila is so far different from what Pasig City has been pushing for: allowing tricycles to operate for public use with “limited trips.”

The policy was criticized by the national government as increasing the possibility of spreading the coronavirus. Sotto later decided to comply fully with the ban, saying that they have other transportation options to provide. – Rappler.com

Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers the House of Representatives and local governments for Rappler. Prior to this, he covered security and crime. He was named Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs. In 2021, he was selected as a journalism fellow by the Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics.