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THE Department of Transportation (DOTr) and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), through the provincial government of Bulacan, have joined hands to conduct the “Tsuper Iskolar Lecture.”

Also launched was the “Libreng Sakay” program for Bulakenyo drivers and operators. Both events were held at the Bulacan Capitol Gymnasium in Malolos

The “Tsuper Iskolar Lecture” was spearheaded by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board Regional Office III (LTFRB-III). More than 160 jeepney drivers and operators under the Public Utility Vehicle Modernization Program (PUVMP) in the province were identified as the recipients of the scholarship wherein their beneficiaries or dependents can also avail the free skills training in the event that they themselves do not want to join the program.

According to Rowena Tolentino, representative of Dir. Jovencio Ferrer of TESDA, every scholar who will sign up for the program is entitled for free skill training, skills assessment and entrepreneurship training and will be provided with training support fund to cover food and transportation allowance equivalent to P350 per training day for a maximum of 35 days hence, the skills acquired will help open for them new opportunities to earn a living.

Further, DOTr Sec. Arthur Tugade explained the significance of having the “Libreng Sakay” project in the province under the Service Contracting Program and how it would guarantee income for interested drivers that will join the program.

Napaka ganda po nitong Libreng Sakay. Dito, makikinabang na ang sambayanan lalo’t higit ang ating mga medical frontliner; ‘yung mga APOR at mga empleyado dito sa ating tinatawag na essential services dahil libre ang pamasahe at walang singilan, ngunit garantisado ang sahod at kita ng ating mga drivers,” Tugade said.

Currently, there are six air-conditioned PM Jeepneys in the province plying the City of Malolos via NLEX Meycauyan-Malhacan.

Tugade also announced that there will be new routes soon in the City of Meycauayan via McArthur Highway, City of Malolos; Bocaue town via Norzagaray-Angat going to National Road; and City of Malolos via San Miguel town going to Cabanatuan.

On the other hand, Bulacan Governor Daniel Fernando highlighted that the purpose of the program is to provide additional knowledge and skills especially for the drivers who will be affected by transportation modernization and also expressed his gratitude to DOTR, LTFRB and TESDA for launching the program in the province.

Ito ay bahagi rin ng paghahanda sa modernisasyon ng ating transport sector. Hangad natin na malinang ang kakayahan ng ating mga displaced worker, mga driver para sa lalong pag-asenso nila sa linya ng marangal na paghahanap-buhay. Ako po ay nagagalak dahil sa pamamagitan nito, makapaghahandog tayo ng mga kursong makapagbibigay ng dagdag kaalaman at iba pang oportunidad para sa mga driver, operator at maging sa mga benepisyaryo nila,” the governor said.

MAIN PHOTO: Governor Daniel Fernando (front), (second row, from left) Pasang Masda President Obet Martin, Department of Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade, and (back) City of Malolos Mayor Gilbert Gatchalian inside one of the buses that will be used to transport health workers and medical frontliners for free during the “Tsuper Iskolar Lecture and Launching of Libreng Sakay.”

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