Duterte announces free MRT3 rides from March 28 to April 30

Pia Ranada

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Duterte announces free MRT3 rides from March 28 to April 30

UPGRADES. President Rodrigo Duterte rides the MRT-3 with Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade.

RTVM screenshot

The free rides will allow the public to enjoy the newly-rehabilitated train for around a month

MANILA, Philippines – MRT-3 riders will get free rides for over a month, announced President Rodrigo Duterte during the inauguration of the newly-rehabilitated MRT-3 on Friday, March 22.

“Secretary [Arthur] Tugade and I decided that the MRT-3 rides will be free, hindi naman (not) forever – from March 28 to April 30, 2022,” said Duterte in the presence of transportation officials and diplomats.

Duterte himself rode on the new train after his speech. The train did not let in any passengers while the President was on board.

Upgrades include an increase in train speed, from 25 kilometers per hour to a maximum of 60 kilometers per hour, said the Department of Transportation. Commuters will now also wait only eight to 10 minutes for the next train to arrive. From just 10 to 15 trains operating daily, the line now has 22 trains, doubling the daily passenger limit, from 300,000 to 600,000.

Duterte also said “all elevators and escalators” are now fully operational.

He thanked the government of Japan for its assistance.

“Your country has always been a friend, an active partner of the Philippines in our development projects,” said Duterte.

The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) provided a loan covering 85% of the total P21.96-billion cost of the project. The loan had an interest rate of 0.10% for non-consulting services and 0.01% for consulting services, with a maturity period of 40 years inclusive of a 12-year grace period. –

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Pia Ranada

Pia Ranada is Rappler’s Community Lead, in charge of linking our journalism with communities for impact.