A man literally pedaled his way using his pedicab from Bukidnon to Manila to seek assistance for his ailing grandmother.
Is it possible to travel from Mindanao to Luzon using a pedicab?
What may seem impossible was achieved by a man named Niel Jay Matunding. He traveled 59 days using his pedicab from Bukidnon to Manila so he could meet Senator Raffy Tulfo and ask for assistance. He finally achieved his goal when he was featured in an episode of Raffy Tulfo in Action.
Niel’s determination was fueled by his love for his Lola Leonie. He shared that he only has his lola and she had been taking care of him all his life. His Lola Leonie used to be a seamstress or ‘mananahi’ but when she got older, she had no choice but to start begging in the streets for money and food.
Now that the 86-year-old grandmother is sick, Niel wants to do all things possible to save her.
Niel said, “Siya na po and nagpalaki sa akin kasi po pinabayaan na po ako ng mama ko.”
The determined young man recalled his experience of braving the long journey so he could meet the generous senator. Niel started traveling from Surigao to Liloan Port in Southern Leyte in June. When he reached the San Juanico Bridge, his bike broke down.
He recalled that he was mocked and ridiculed for his goal. “Nababaliw na daw po ako,” he shared. He was even mistaken for a rebel when he crossed Bukidnon to Davao City.
Despite it, he continued his long journey; determined to seek help for his lola. Niel reached Allen Northern Samar and went on to Matnog and Bicol. Using his pedicab, Niel reached Calamba, Laguna until finally, he reached Manila.
With P700 in his pocket, Niel reached Manila from Bukidnon. He is grateful to the other cyclists, policemen, and other strangers who showed him kindness during his travel.
During the interview with Tulfo, Niel is asking that her lola be given medicines, foods, and good shelter.
“Nagplano na po ako noon 2019 kung paano po ako makapunta dito sa inyo. Kaya nagpa-salamat po ako dahil may nagbigay po sa akin ng bisikleta,” Niel told the senator.
Tulfo told Niel that he can leave his bicycle on his way back to his hometown but he refused because he uses it to sell pandesal. So, the kind host said he will buy Niel a new bike. Tulfo assured that he will give Niel financial assistance for his lola and build a new house for them. He also plans to send Niel back to school. Tulfo will also assess the right livelihood for them.
You can watch the video from Raffy Tulfo in Action via Youtube: