Gov’t offers free rides to stranded commuters

Marje Pelayo   •   July 18, 2018   •   2083

Government trucks to service stranded commuters on Wednesday, July 18. Photo courtesy of Atty. Aileen Lizada, Spokesperson Jount Quick Response Team

QUEZON CITY, Philippines – The government has pre-positioned several trucks and buses on Wednesday (July 18) to give free rides to commuters stranded in major roads in Metro Manila drenched by monsoon rains.

Government agencies are offering free rides to and from four designated routes namely Commonwealth Circle and Quiapo in Manila; Monumento in Caloocan and Pedro Gil Street in Manila; the US Embassy and Baclaran in Manila; and EDSA-Timog in Quezon City to Taft Avenue in Manila.

According to Atty. Aileen Lizada, spokesperson of the Joint Quick Response Team (JQRT), the public may request free rides through government hotline 136.

Motorists are reminded that the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has earlier lifted the number coding for city buses. – Joan Nano / Marje Pelayo 

MRT-3 is giving free rides on Independence Day! Check the schedules here

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 6, 2019

The Metro Rail 3 (MRT-3) will be giving free rides to celebrate the 121st Independence Day of the Philippines on June 12.

Passengers can ride the MRT-3 for free from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. and from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Meanwhile, there is no announcement yet from other train systems if they will also offer free rides on Independence Day.

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

Marje Pelayo   •   December 4, 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)

Atty. Aileen Lizada is now CSC Commissioner

Marje Pelayo   •   November 29, 2018

FILE PHOTO: Atty. Aileen Lizada

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte appointed Atty. Aileen Lizada as the new commissioner of the Civil Service Commission (CSC).

Lizada’s appointment paper was signed by the President on November 9, 2018.

Prior to her appointment to the CSC, Lizada served as Board Member of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB).

She will replace Robert Martinez at CSC.

Lizada’s term in CSC will end in February 2, 2025. – UNTV News and Rescue

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