Remember those free bus rides on EDSA? They’re not completely free. Fuel and labor cost money, and moving hundreds of thousands of commuters requires a not-insignificant sum.
In a recent Laging Handa public briefing, new Department of Transportation (DOTr) head Jaime Bautista said that the agency needs additional funds if it plans to continue free EDSA Carousel bus rides until the end of the year.
How much does the DOTr need? An extra P1.4 billion.
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“Yun pong Libreng Sakay diyan sa EDSA Carousel...ay merong certain budget. Kung itutuloy po natin yan hangang December, we will need an additional budget of around P1.4 billion, which [is] hindi po available sa existing budget namin,” Bautista said during the briefing.
According to the Transport secretary, the agency will need to ask the administration for the additional budget to continue the Libreng Sakay program on EDSA.
“But kung kailangan natin ituloy hanggang December 31, we will ask for additional budget from the Department of Budget and Management,” he said.“So hihingi po kami ng tulong sa Presidente para magkaroon ng ganyang budget para sa DOTr.”
With the way fuel prices are soaring, ending the EDSA Busway’s free rides program would be a major inconvenience for countless commuters. Do you think the DOTr should continue it?