The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has suspended the number coding scheme for public utility vehicles (PUVs). The news comes right as students across NCR and beyond are coming back for face-to-face classes beginning this Monday, August 22, 2022.
The move is seen to aid students get to classrooms in their return to in-person learning. The MMDA says the number coding suspension for PUVs is effective until the end of the school year. It reminds PUV operators and drivers, however, that they are not exempt from incurring other traffic violations.
Earlier this month, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) requested for the MMDA to suspend the number coding scheme for all vehicles, in addition to lifting the no-contact apprehension program (NCAP). The reasoning behind this lies in the need for more PUVs to get on the road in time for face-to-face classes.
While the MMDA responded by lifting the number coding scheme for PUVs, it has yet to reach a decision regarding the controversial NCAP. The camera-based ticketing program has drawn flak in recent weeks due to a number of suspicious issues, including inaccurate violations and apparent “traps.”
If the MMDA does decide to suspend the NCAP momentarily, it cannot do so only with PUVs in mind. Selective violation citations could be a logistical and technical nightmare for the MMDA. This likely means that the government agency would need to apply the suspension for all drivers, regardless of whether they’re in public or private vehicles.
With more PUVs now able to ply the roads of Metro Manila, commuters should have more options when going to school or work. It should also be noted that this could mean the traffic situation is only going to get worse from here. All that being said, motorists should prepare for anything that comes their way in the weeks and months ahead.