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DOTR-LTFRB: P10.00 minimum jeepney fare not yet effective

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Thursday, October 18th, 2018

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) clarified confusion on the official implementation of the P2.00 increase in minimum fare on public utility jeepneys (PUJ).

In a decision issued by the LTFRB, the P2.00 fare increase is broken down to “additional one peso for the first four kilometers or a minimum fare of ten pesos from the original fare of eight pesos.”

The decision covers PUJs in Metro Manila, Central Luzon and in the Southern Tagalog Region.

However, the DOTr stressed that the P2.00 fare hike is not yet executory and will only take effect on the first week of November.

This, after a copy of the order leaked on social media that bears no final and official signature.

 “We request drivers to wait until the LTFRB releases the official document on the fare hike before charging any additional fare. Thank you for understanding.” The DOTR-LTFRB’s statement said.

It was in September 2017 when transport groups filed a petition for a fare increase for PUJs citing uncontrollable increase in prices of oil products.

The LTFRB granted the P1 provisional fare increase for jeepneys in Metro Manila and the regions concerned in July this year thus making the minimum fare for jeepneys P9.00.

With an additional P1.00 increase, the minimum fare is now set at P10.00 – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Joan Nano)

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Motorcycles for public transportation under study by DOTr

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Monday, December 24th, 2018

(file photo)

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Transportation (DOTr) has created a technical working group (TWG) to study on the possible legalization of motorcycles for public transportation.

The idea was in consideration of the existing temporary restraining order (TRO) filed against the operation of motorcycle ride-hailing service ‘Angkas’.

The TWG is composed of members from the DOTR, Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board; Land Transportation Office; the Metropolitan Manila Development Auhtority; and the PNP Highway Patrol Group.

Other members of the group include members from the Senate, the House of Representatives, commuters and road safety advocates, as well as motorcycle manufacturers, motorcycle organization and members from law schools.

According to Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade, deliberations on the proposal will prioritize passenger safety as well as the responsibilities of the motorcycle driver in the event of an accident.

In his statement, Tugade sai that the agency “understand that a number of Filipinos patronize motorcycles as public transport.”

“But we should remember that there is a law against this, and the Supreme Court has issued a TRO. The law is the law, and the executive will not be the first to break it. But we at the DOTr know how to listen,” he added.

The DOTr and the LTFRB earlier maintained that under Republic Act 4136, the use of motorcycles for public transportation is prohibited in the Philippines.

As for the ride-hailing company ‘Angkas’, its management has already submitted their comment and is now awaiting the final decision from the Supreme Court as regards their operation. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Joan Nano)

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HOR suspends DOTr’s truck phase-out order

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Monday, December 10th, 2018

QUEZON CITY, Philippines – The House of Representatives (HOR) on Monday (December 10) suspended the implementation of an order issued by the Department of Transportation (DOTr) phasing out trucks 15 years old and above.

According to House Committee on Metro Manila Development, the suspension was due to lack of comprehensive study on its implementation by the agencies enforcing the order.

“(Were) there studies made prior to issuance of this department order, studies that reflect that after 15 years, certain vehicles in the country resulted in accidents breakdowns of trucks?’ asked COOP-NATCO Party list Rep. Anthony Bravo.

“On my personal knowledge po wala po. Hindi ko po alam sa DOTR. Ang alam ko po nag trigger nito yung mga dumadaming aksidete ng units,” replied Board Member Ronaldo Corpuz of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB).

Corpuz argued that vehicles 15 years old and above are already prone to accidents since the metals could be worn out already due to age.

“Ikino-consider din po diyan ang metal fatigue. Kahit po sabihin natin na kunwari ang isang unit ay nagpa-ganda pero iyong kalamnan niya ay medyo marupok na rin,” Corpuz argued.

But the House panel and a group of truckers are not convinced by LTFRB’s argument.

“Ang naaaksidenteng nakikita natin nakakatulog lang yung drivers,” said Senior Citizens Party list Rep. Francisco Datol.

“Ang problema po ang disiplina ng mga driver natin. Kung minsan kung makipagbalagbagan sa kalsada kala mo sidecar ang dala,” added Rep. Michael Lopez of Manila.

For the Alliance of Philippine Brokers and Truckers, the standard of the vehicle is not measured by its age.

“There could very well be trucks that are 5 years old and yet not be road worthy…it appears that the standard being used is not reasonable,” argued Atty. Ferdinand Mañebo, the group’s legal counsel.

The House committee suggested that the DOTr should work more on purchasing new motor vehicle inspection service units to make sure that all vehicles are properly checked before travelling.

“Two years ago we [Congress] allocated funds for the purchase of MVIS.  However, because of the bureaucratic delay of your office, hindi po nare-realize ang beauty ng implementation ng MVIS,” explained Committee Chair Rep. Winnie Castelo.

Castelo has ordered the committee secretary to notify the DOTr of the suspension of the order on truck phase out. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Grace Casin)

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Commuter, transport groups call for resignation of LTFRB’s Martin Delgra

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Tuesday, December 4th, 2018

FILE PHOTO: LTFRB Chairman Martin Delgra III

QUEZON CITY, Philippines – Some transport and commuter groups are dismayed by the sudden cut in jeepney fares without proper consultation from stakeholders.

The minimum jeepney fare of P9.00 took effect on Tuesday from the previous P10.00.

Tuesday (December 4) was supposedly the second hearing of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) on the group’s petition to rollback the minimum jeepney fare to P8.00 instead of P9.00.

“Bakit bigla-bigla nilang kinansela itong hearing na ito? Ano ang dahilan? Bastusan na ba ito?” said RJ Javellana of the United Filipino Consumers and Commuters (UFCC) group.

The UFCC argued that the rollback was not enough because the price of oil has already been slashed many times to a significant amount.

Avellana said, even bus fares should also be rolled back following the oil price drop.

“Taong 2008 buwan po ng Mayo, ang presyo po ng diesel ay P46.40. Ang presyo po ng pamasahe ay P8. Ang pamasahe po kahapon P10 pesos. Ngayon ay P9.00 pesos pero ang diesel po ay naglalaro sa P38.80,” Avellana argued.

The transport group insisted that the LTFRB should have held a consultation or a hearing on the price cut prior to its implementation.

Efren de Luna of the Alliance of Concerned Transport Organizations (ACTO) said fare cuts or fare hikes shouldn’t be based solely on the price of oil.

De Luna said maintenance cost, discounts for senior citizens and students, the color-coding scheme as well as the traffic situation are also significant factors to be considered in planning for fare adjustments.

The group added that their petition for fare increase have long been stalled and have already incurred them losses in income.

“Dating nakakaanim na ikot kami, dahil sa matinding traffic naging  apat na lamang ang pag-ikot namin edi napakalaki ng pasahero na nawala sa amin,” De Luna lamented.

Meanwhile, former LTFRB Board Member Atty. Aileen Lizada expressed support to the complaints of the transport and commuters’ groups.

She believes that the resolution for a fare cut was drafted and released in haste.

“Ang proseso kasi nauuna si board member Corpuz and then to my office and then last si Chairman Delgra. So yung natanggap kong resolusyon tama yung protocol Corpuz, ako. Pero yung nilabas nila, Corpuz (to) Delgra. Hindi na idinaan sa akin when in fact I have 2 copies of the draft resolution signed by board member Corpuz,” Lizada said on the alleged breach of channeling in the recent fare reduction.

However, Lizada clarified that the agency has the power to impose fare reduction even without a petition and if the latest fare increase is only temporary.

Because of the controversy, the groups called on LTFRB Martin Delgra to resign as they accuse him of mismanaging the agency.

Delgra has yet to respond to their call.

Lizada, meanwhile, whose term in the LTFRB ends today, calls on her former colleagues to be more open and to listen to the queries of the agency’s stakeholders.

“My message to the members of the board: have time to dialogue with your stakeholders. Hindi po natin sila kalaban. Listen to them. If you want their cooperation, be open enough to meet them. Let us not meet them only when we need something from them. Let us meet them especially when they need us. That’s why we are placed there,” Lizada concluded. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Rey Pelayo)

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