MANILA - President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Tuesday said students will be entitled to ride the Light Rail Transit (LRT) Line 2 for free.
"Libreng Sakay (Free Fare) continues as is. But (what) we are going to do is we are going to do a program for the students," he said in his first press conference as Philippine President.
"We will fully subsidize their pamasahes (fares). Students will ride for free on LRT2 which is going to university belt," he said.
Marcos made the announcement a day after the Department of Transportation said students can avail of free rides on LRT-2, MRT-3 and PNR from Aug. 22 until Nov. 4.
This, after Marcos approved last Friday a memorandum submitted by the DOTr for the said program, as well as for the extension of the free EDSA Carousel bus rides until December of this year.
Last month, the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) said they have already consumed 80 percent of their funds for the fare subsidy program.
"We are paying P10 million per day, and 14 million sa [National Capital Region]. Nagkakaroon talaga ng exhaustion, and this is a nationwide program, pati Region 1 until Caraga nagpa-participate," Executive Director Maria Kristina Cassion had said.
The Libreng Sakay program stopped covering the original 118 routes last June 16.
Free rides for the EDSA Bus Lane and Commonwealth Route 7 which transports passengers from Montalban to Quezon Avenue will continue until July 31, 2022.
Marcos backed Vice President and Education Secretary Sara Duterte's earlier push to resume face to face classes on August.
The government hopes to fully restore physical classes by November this year, the President said.
More than 38,000 schools in the country are set to resume face-to-face classes in the coming school year, the DOTr said, quoting the DepEd.