MANILA -- The Department of Transportation (DOTr) on Friday said that it is just following guidelines of the government inter-agency task force for not allowing highly vulnerable persons on mass transportation if the general community quarantine is enforced.
This after reports on the alleged ban on those who are below 21 years old; 60 years old and above; pregnant; and those with immunodeficiency, comorbidities, and other health risks in mass transport systems under the general community quarantine.
"The health and safety of our citizens is paramount, and public interest dictates that government exhaust all efforts to uphold this protective stance, especially for those who are most susceptible and vulnerable to COVID-19," the agency said in a statement.
"Under the current environment, the DOTr defers to the expert and careful recommendation of the IATF in the implementation of policy guidelines and measures intended to protect our people," it added.
The transportation department said that exceptions under the guidelines are "when indispensible under the circumstances for obtaining essential goods and services, or for work in permitted industries and offices."
The national government has extended the enhanced community quarantine in Metro Manila and other regions for another two weeks while placing other areas under a general community quarantine.
To date, the Philippines has tallied 10,463 coronavirus infections, of whom 696 died while 1,734 have recovered.