Two local mayors gathered interesting reactions online on their suspension announcements following the nationwide transport strike on September 30.
Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto suspended all classes and even provided free rides within the city for his constituents.
Manila Mayor Isko Moreno, on the other hand, also made class suspensions but only for college students as he believed—apparently without concrete data at hand—that younger students only live nearby.
No classes plus free rides
Sotto gathered mostly praises when he made the announcement on September 29, the day before large-scale protests.
He made it clear that all classes from private and public schools were suspended, the number coding scheme was also lifted for the day and free rides were also available for workers.
Due to the anticipated Public Transport Strike tomorrow (Mon, 30 Sept 2019):Classes in Pasig City — all levels,…
He shared the schedule and routes of Pasig’s free transport scheme as provided at the Pasig Transport Facebook page.
Libreng sakay para sa lunes, 30 Setyembre 2019. Anim na ruta na tatakbo mula 05:00AM-12:00NN at 01:00PM-08:00PM.
Moreover, he also encouraged carpooling for others’ convenience.
“Motorists and commuters are also encouraged to explore carpooling options,” Sotto said.
Sotto’s post made rounds both on Facebook and Twitter.
Only college students
Moreno, meanwhile, gathered mixed reactions when he only suspended classes of college students.
“May pasok naman sa lahat ng preschool hanggang senior high school, private and public, dahil karamihan sa mga mag-aaral dito ay nakatira malapit lamang sa mga paaralan,” he said on Facebook.
#WalangPasok sa lahat ng kolehiyo (kasama ang graduate schools) sa Maynila, private at public, dahil sa nationwide…
Some people cited the teachers and younger commuting students who live far from Pasig to be the ones affected.
Others made light of the situation and shared witty memes for it instead.
Isko: #WalangPasok pero college only
— Danica (@danicassantos) September 29, 2019
Other suspensions and free rides
The nationwide strike was led by the three major transport groups Stop and Go Coalition, Pagkakaisa ng mga Samahan ng Tsuper at Operators Nationwide (PISTON) and Alliance of Concerned Transport Organizations (ACTO), which includes at least 2,000 UV express operators in Metro Manila.
The protests took place in more than 10 cities in the country.
For the convenience of the commuters, some local government units in the metropolis suspended classes.
Aside from Pasig and Manila, other cities with class suspensions were Marikina, Muntinlupa, Parañaque, Pasay and San Juan.
Moreover, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority also lifted the number-coding scheme and the Department of Transportation deployed buses and military trucks to service stranded passengers for free.
The local transport agency, in particular, provided units of modern public utility vehicles for free rides to some regions.