City to legalize ‘habal-habal’ as public transportation

In what could be a pandemic-influenced move, the once-frowned upon ‘habal-habal’ could soon be a legitimate public transport.

The legalization of ‘habal-habal’ or motorcycle taxi as a mode of public transport is now a subject of joint committee hearings for the possible passage of a regulatory ordinance initiated by city councilors Danilo Dayanghirang and Conrado Baluran.

Dayanghirang is the chairman of the Committee on Finance, Ways, and Means while Baluran heads the Committee on Transportation and Communication.

Dayanghirang said last week they have conducted committee hearing where motorcycle drivers present unanimously agreed that it is time to regulate ‘habal-habal’ to ensure the safety of the riding public. 

Dayanghirang said the routes of ‘habal-habal’ will also be regulated to avoid possible conflicts. He said routes will be reviewed and heard by local tricycles board under the city government of Davao. 

“These motorcycles are necessary to ferry passengers especially in the far flung areas and even during night and day time where shortage of riding unit is apparent. Also minors and driving under the influence of liquor will be stop also,” he said.  

Dayanghirang added that motorcycles to be regulated must be roadworthy and will guarantee the safety of the riding public. “Ang atoang city council is conducting committee hearings ug naga-paminaw na sila sa mga tao about sa pag-regulate sa motorcycle as mode of public transportation.”

Dayanghirang believes that adding motorcycle as public transportation will also serve as additional means of transport for the riding public and a source of economic livelihood in this time of crisis. 

He said the passage of an ordinance is supported by Mayor Sara and almost all members of the Sangguniang Panlungsod. 

Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio has reiterated that using ‘habal-habal’ as mode of public transportation is prohibited. 

“Before ang Covid-19, bawal ng habal-habal ug during Covid bawal ng habal habal and after Covid bawal gihapon ng habal habal because it is not dependent sa presence sa Covid-19. Bawal gamiton as transportation ang motorcycle,” she said.  

However, Mayor Sara said she already referred this to the city council on how to regulate ‘habal-habal’ as public transportation.

“Because we can see in other parts of the world nga ginagamit jud ang motorcycle as public transportation,” she said. 

Consultations are being finalized and the resolution is expected to be passed soon.