By Chloe Mari A. Hufana

THE METROPOLITAN Manila Development Authority (MMDA) on Monday said it would not start issuing traffic violation tickets to e-bikes, e-trikes and other light vehicles caught using national roads until April 17 despite the enforcement of the rule starting Monday.

This is in consideration of the transport strike by jeepney drivers opposing the government’s modernization plan, MMDA Acting Chairman Romando S. Artes told a news briefing on Monday.

“For e-trikes and e-bikes, today is the start of the implementation,” he said. “We will just apprehend [erring drivers] but not issue tickets, as part of our information dissemination system and in consideration of the transport strike.”

Jeepney drivers from the Pagkakaisa ng mga Samahan ng Tsuper at Operator Nationwide (Piston) and Manibela started another strike against the modernization plan and franchise consolidation on Monday, affecting commuters in Metro Manila.

Mr. Artes noted that starting Wednesday, e-bikes and e-trikes that use national roads will be fined P2,500. Drivers without a license and unregistered light vehicles will be impounded.

The MMDA through Regulation No. 24-002 banned light vehicles from major roads in the capital region due to increasing accidents involving these vehicles.

AltMobility PH Director Ira F. Cruz said the popularity of e-bikes and e-trikes reflects the government’s failure to provide basic mobility needs of Filipinos.

He noted that more Filipinos have been using e-trikes and e-bikes to work, to bring their kids to school and for business.

“In previous years, we’ve also seen growth in the number of electric kick scooters and other personal mobility devices,” he told BusinessWorld in a Viber message. “To some, it can also be a first-mile, last-mile solution — a means of transportation that brings them to and from public transit stops and/or other modes of transportation.”

The MMDA recorded 2,829 accidents in 2022 involving bikes, e-bikes and pedicabs.