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DOTr to consider grievances of drivers, operators on the Jeepney Modernization Program

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Tuesday, December 12th, 2017

MANILA, Philippines — Some transport groups have once again expressed their concerns on the implementation of the Jeepney Modernization Program of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) next year.

They claim many drivers are concerned about losing their livelihood once the program begins.

“Ang jeepneys ang sumalo sa dapat na tungkulin ng pamahalaan (the jeepneys shoulder what should be the government’s responsibilities),” Pinagkaisang Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Operator Nationwide (PISTON) national president, George San Mateo said.

Alliance of Concerned Transport Organization (ACTO) national president, Efren De Luna fears that their units will fall short in the examination.

“Ang pinagbabatayan nila sa examine yung mga bago nang makina. Mga surplus po kami, baka di kami maangkop na baka pagdating ng January walang pumasa sa MVIS (Motor Vehicle Inspection System),” said De Luna.

(In the examination, they use latest engine models as the standard. Ours are only surplus, we might not be deemed suitable that come January we will not pass the MVIS.)

Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade, meanwhile, explained the said program underwent consultation.

Tugade said the groups cannot use as an excuse the P1.5-million tag price of modern jeepneys because there are also models that cost P800,000.

The Transportation chief also said that jeepney drivers and operators should not be afraid to invest but rather think of the return of investment they can get with the new jeepney models.

Senator Vicente Sotto III suggested easing up on the implementation of the program.

“Let the river flow. Pupunta at pupunta sila diyan sa moderno pag nakita na nila. Pero ngayon pa lang eh dinidiktahan nating ganyan, mahihirapan tayo (Let the river flow. They will eventually go with modernization once they see it. But if we force it on them, we’ll have difficulty),” Sen. Vicente Sotto III said.

Tugade responded, “That will be recon and deliberated upon and considered within that time frame of 3 years.”

The DOTr vowed to take into consideration the concerns of various stakeholders in the implementation of the said program.

Senator Grace Poe, meanwhile, appealed to the Transportation chief to also allow old jeepney units to operate if these will pass safety standards.

Tugade reminded Poe of the safety standards that must be followed such as having the door on the side and not on the back.

 

The senator urged the DOTr to allow the transport sector to adjust to the new program before fully implementing it.

Magkaroon muna ng pilot projects. Hindi pwedeng sabay-sabay lahat ng areas. Siguro kung compliance sa safety, roadworthiness at saka yung emissions, pwede munang iyon ang unahin (There should be pilot projects first. You can’t have it in all areas simultaneously. If its compliance with safety, roadworthiness and emissions, maybe we can start with that),” Poe said. – Nel Maribojoc | UNTV News & Rescue

 

 

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P2P bus routes reach 35

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Thursday, December 6th, 2018

(File photo)

MANILA, Philippines — The number of routes traversed by premium Point-to-Point (P2P) buses has reached 35 in Metro Manila and nearby provinces.

The Department of Transportation (DOTr) said there were initially only two routes in 2016, but has expanded its trips to cover Cavite, Laguna, Rizal, Bulacan, Pangasinan, Zambales, and Pampanga.

New five other routes are set to open soon. — UNTV News & Rescue

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Poe warns DOTr of budget cut over PUV modernization issues

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Tuesday, August 28th, 2018

Senator Grace Poe via Facebook

 

Senate Committee on Public Services chairperson Senator Grace Poe has warned officials of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) of a possible cut in next year’s budget if they fail to answer various concerns of jeepney drivers and operators regarding the public utility vehicle modernization program of the government.

“Kung hindi nila magagawa yan magkakaproblema sila pagdating ng kanilang budget. Nasa kapangyarihan ng Kongreso at Senado na gawin yan,” Poe said.

“Siyempre ayaw naman natin na basta ipitin dahil maraming apektado, pero kailangan muna nilang patunayan ang kanilang sarili na sa tamang paraan nila ginagasta ang pinapamahagi ng taumbayan.”

Among the issues that the senator wants to clarify is whether or not the P80,000 subsidy would be enough to allow the drivers and operators to comply with the program.

She also noted the slow-paced distribution of fuel vouchers and claimed that, to date, only 25 percent of the total population of jeepney drivers nationwide has received their vouchers.

Senator Poe was the guest of honor at Monday’s transport summit led by the transport group Pinagkaisang Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Operator Nationwide (PISTON).

The event was attended by hundreds of jeepney drivers and operators who expressed their doubts and complaints anew against the PUV nmodernization program.

PISTON clarified that they support the proposed improvements in the public transportation sector, but not the current version of DOTr and Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) wherein, he said, only big car manufacturers will benefit from it and not the jeepney drivers and commuters.

The group is grateful to Poe for understanding their concerns.

PISTON national president, George San Mateo said, “Kampante kami at natutuwa kami sa pahayag ni Senator Poe kasi yun naman talaga ang gusto namin mangyari – maimbestigahan ulit itong isyu ng pekeng modernization. Lalo na on the basis ng mga bagong sirkular na nilabas ng LTFRB.”

Piston is asking the Senate committee to investigate what they claim is a questionable provision under the omnibus franchising guidelines that forces the individual operators to purchase modern jeepney units.

The LTFRB on the other hand has been pushing for upgraded models of jeepney units to prevent road accidents. — Joan Nano

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15 modern jeepneys begin plying Pasay roads

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Tuesday, June 19th, 2018

MANILA, Philippines — Fifteen modern jeepney units have begun plying the roads Pasay City.

Unlike the old iconic models, the new ones are similar to passenger buses.  The door is in front and is fully air-conditioned. It has front-facing seats that can accommodate up to 30 passengers. It has CCTV, GPS, and uses a euro-four engine.

In modern jeepneys, passengers use automated mode of payment or beep cards.

Minimum fare for modern jeepneys is P10 and an additional of P2 for every succeeding kilometer.

The jeepneys will ply Star City and the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) Complex going to the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC).

It will also traverse the area of GSIS building and Senate going to SM Mall of Asia and the Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange (PITX).

The Senate Employees Transport Cooperative will manage the operation of the new jeepney units as well as the salary of the drivers.

“Its drivers will no longer have to vie for passengers. For the first eight hours, they have a fixed income. They will have benefits like SSS, PhilHealth, and Pagibig as mandated by law,” said  SETSCO Chair Venturina Remedios.

The Department of Transportation (DOTr) targets to launch up to 500 units of modern jeepneys before the State of the Nation Address (SONA) of President Rodrigo Duterte in July.

Meanwhile, the DOTr will also begin distributing fuel vouchers to jeepney drivers next month.

Transportation Undersecretary for Road Transport Thomas Orbos said that the government will provide a P5,000 subsidy to each driver through a debit card.

“For the first year, the government will give close to a billion pesos. Drivers should have legitimate franchise per unit. But in the next two years, they should have modern vehicles,” said Orbos.

The Land Transportation and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) awaits the complete list of drivers who could receive a fuel voucher.

The move is in accordance with the directive of President Rodrigo Duterte to aid Filipinos affected by the implementation of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law. — Joan Nano | UNTV News & Rescue

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