By Denise A. Valdez, Reporter

ANGKAS (DBDOYC, Inc.) is targeting to start the six-month pilot run of motorcycle taxis before the end of June, as the Department of Transportation (DoTr) tapped the ride-hailing firm to work with the government in studying the public transport alternative.

During the six-month period, Angkas said it hopes the government would pass a bill to legalize the two-wheeled vehicle as a means of public transportation.

George I. Royeca, head of regulatory and public affairs of Angkas, said in a press briefing Thursday the company is continuously conducting the retraining of its 27,000 bikers to follow the standards set by the government’s technical working group (TWG) for motorcycle taxis.

“We will have a set schedule when we can start the pilot implementation for everybody… Hopefully third week of June matapos lahat [we finish everything]. ’Yun ang ating target date [That’s our target date],” he said.

“We’re doing everything to make sure that the bikers we have are retrained properly with the conditions of the TWG,” he added.

The pilot test of motorcycle taxis in Metro Manila and Metro Cebu is being conducted upon the recommendation of the DoTr’s TWG, which set guidelines on fares, speed limit and safety gear.

Angkas has been in a tug-of-war with the government since 2017 as the Land Transportation and Traffic Code, or Republic Act No. 4136, does not recognize single motorcycles to operate for public transport.

The DoTr formed the TWG in December to address recommendations to include the two-wheeled vehicle as a legal transportation mode. Mr. Royeca said Angkas is hoping a bill will be passed within the six-month period to legalize its operations.

“Even before the six-month (period) ends, we hope to refile the bill in Congress and Senate. We hope to have a very healthy dialogue (with the Congress) so that we can update them on a regular basis on the operations of the pilot program, refine the implementing rules and regulations and put that as part of the bill, whatever is deemed necessary,” Mr. Royeca said.

“Hopefully within six months, mapasa ’yung bill [the bill is passed]. Bago pa matapos ’yung pilot [Even before the pilot test ends],” he added.

Angkas Head of Operations David Brian C. Medrana noted the goal of the pilot run is to aid the Congress in legislation.

“Before, walang documents, walang numbers na sina-submit, na-approve na sa Congress. With the numbers that we will be submitting on a monthly basis, we hope the legislation can be faster,” he said.