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IN PHOTO (L-R): Undersecretary Cesar B. Chavez, Secretary Jaime J. Bautista, Chairman of the PNR Board General Roberto T. Lastimoso, Director Henry L. Uri, Director Roi M. Villa, PNR General Manager Jeremy S. Regino.

 

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Manila, Philippines - The Philippine National Railways (PNR) celebrated its 130th anniversary on Thursday, November 24, with a bloodletting drive in Tutuban, in cooperation with the Philippine Red Cross.

With the theme “Isang Siglo at Tatlong Dekada: Byaheng PNR sa moderno at maunlad na transportasyong pampubliko,” Department of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Jaime J. Bautista addressed the PNR officials, employees, and personnel and shared the DOTr’s plans and vision to improve the country’s railway sector, specifically the PNR.

“Kagaya ng 1960s at 1970s na itinuturing na ‘Golden Years’ ng PNR, kaya natin itong ibalik, at mahigitan pa. Kaya nating ibalik ang suporta at paghanga ng mga Pilipino sa ating railroad system,” Secretary Bautista said.

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In his first direct address to the PNR officials, employees, and personnel since assuming office in June, Secretary Bautista said the North-South Commuter Rail (NSCR) and the South-Long Haul (SLH) projects will be world-class and at par with international standards.

“Tayo ay gagawa ng isang railroad network na world-class, maipagmamalaki hindi lamang sa Asya, kundi pati na rin sa buong mundo. Mga bago, moderno, at mabilis na tren na tatakbo mula Clark hanggang Calamba, patuloy hanggang Bicol,” Secretary Bautista said.

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“I reiterate now an earlier personal appeal to the DoTr and its attached agencies and their personnel and employees. That collectively, we must focus on improving the travel experience of passengers by adopting four public service norms: safety, affordability, accessibility, and efficiency,” Secretary Bautista said.

“The daunting challenges in the four sectors of travel require our collective dedication and commitment,” Secretary Bautista said.

Together with the Philippine Red Cross, the bloodletting activity held at the PNR Tutuban Station was among the many campaigns geared toward maintaining the country’s steady blood supply crucial in saving lives.

“Maganda po itong bloodletting project kasi bukod sa makatutulong ito sa personal health ko, maaari din nitong tulungan ang maraming Pilipino nangangailangan ng dugo,” a PNR employee said.

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Aside from the Tutuban bloodletting drive, the PNR conducts on Friday an optical mission in its Calamba Station, in partnership with the Special Philippine Eye Care Solutions Foundation (SPECS).

Calamba Mayor Roseller H. Rizal is expected to open the PNR Calamba Station optical mission.

The optical mission will benefit about 300 Calamba residents and will provide eyeglasses to those who need them. ###