Duterte decision on public transport distancing policy out Sept. 21, says Palace

Arianne Merez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 17 2020 02:00 PM

President Rodrigo Duterte addresses the public after a meeting with the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) at the Malago Clubhouse in Malacañang on Sept. 14, 2020. Ace Morandante, Presidential Photo

MANILA— President Rodrigo Duterte is expected to announce his decision on the required physical distancing in public transport on Monday, Sept. 21, Malacañang said Thursday.

Until then, a one-meter distance between passengers must be observed in public transport, Duterte's spokesperson Harry Roque said.

"Inaasahan natin na siguro po magkakaroon ng desisyon ang Presidente sa Lunes," Roque said during a Palace press briefing.

(We expect the President to have a decision by Monday.)

The issue was elevated to the President after members of the government's pandemic response task force failed to reach a consensus on the policy.

As of Thursday, Roque said Duterte was still waiting for the report of the task force.

"Ang report po na pag-aaralan ni Presidente ay isusumite pa lamang ngayong araw," Roque said.

(The report to be studied by the President will be submitted today.)

Medical professionals were divided over government's earlier move to reduce physical distancing between public transport passengers to 0.75 meters from 1 meter.

The Department of Transportation had cited supposed public clamor to ease distancing measures in public transport for the policy.