LTFRB to tighten implementation of 15 year-old buses phaseout

admin   •   April 25, 2017   •   4351

MANILA — The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) plans to meet with the Department of Transportation (DOTr) to revise an order issued in 2013 that prohibits the travel of passenger buses that are 15 years old and above.

The LTFRB is seeking to tighten even more the implementation of the said department order.

“Paiigtingin namin yung existing department order na nagtatalaga na yung 15 year old age of the bus will not be reckoned from the date of importation but rather from the date of manufacture.  And now ka-klaruhinnamin dun to show proof of such date of manufacture,” said LTFRB chairman Atty. Martin Delgra.

(We are strengthening the existing department order that orders the phase out of 15 year old age of the bus will not be reckoned from the date of importation but rather from the date of manufacture. And now we will clarify in the order to show proof of such date of manufacture.)

The LTFRB calls on bus operators to always consider the safety of passengers first before their own profits.

“Before nila i-deploy yung buses nila, make their buses road worthy always, there should be no compromise to these procedures. Ibig sabihin, hindi lang nila titignan profit margin nila. Baka nagtitipid na kapag walang safety officer.  Sige pagdating ng driver palabasin na ang bus pwede na bumiyahe. Please do not do that,” Atty. Delgra added.

(Before deploying their buses, they should make sure their buses are road worthy always. There should be no compromise to these procedures. This means, they should not just look at their profit margin. Some might be thinking of spending less without a safety officer. Or, when the driver arrives they will claim that the bus is fit for travel. Please do not do that.)

Some operators are in favor of the proposal particularly those acquiring new bus units.

“Meron nagmamanipulate ng year model… unfair iyon to those operators na bumibili ng bagong unit ng buses costing them ng 6M per unit,” Samahang Transport Operators ng Pilipinas Corporate Director Juliet de Jesus said. (There are some trying to manipulate the year model… that is unfair to those operators who are acquiring new bus units costing them P6 million per unit.)

Meanwhile, Passenger Accident Management and Insurance agency (PAMI) has distributed insurance claims worth  P200, 000 each to families of the 24 victims who died in the recent bus accident in Carranglan, Nueva Ejica.

LTFRB’s data show relatives of the six fatalities have yet to receive their financial claims, while four casualties have not been identified yet.

Out of more than 40 injured, only nine have received P20, 000 each.

The amount excludes the financial aid that must be received by the victims who are to undergo an operation.

President Rodrigo Duterte also gave P20, 000 to the relatives of each of the fatalities.

The President gave P10, 000 to each of the injured.

The LTFRB plans to seek assistance from the Office of the President for the other medical assistance needed by the recovering victims. — Joan Nano | UNTV News & Rescue

Duterte to insist arbitral ruling to China: ‘Whether you like it or not’

Marje Pelayo   •   August 22, 2019

(L-R) President Rodrigo Duterte, Pag-asa Island and Chinese President Xi Jinping

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte maintained that he will raise the arbitral ruling that favors the Philippines in the disputed territories in the West Philippine Sea when he visits China next week.

Duterte is scheduled to fly to China for a working visit from August 28 to September 3.

He will meet Chinese president Xi Jinping and talk about the Hague ruling, the code of conduct, as well as the proposed joint oil exploration in the West Philippine Sea.

“So whether you like it or not, would it make you happy or not, angry or otherwise. Sorry, but we have to talk the arbitral ruling, then what we get, if there is a start of the exploration and extraction of whatever there is in the bowels of the earth,” the President said during the inauguration of the 7.5 megawatt peak solar power project in the municipality of Odiongan, Tablas Island in Romblon on Wednesday (August 21).

“The proposal of 60-40 in our favor, would be a good start. I hope it would graduate to something like towards how do we solve the arbitral ruling peacefully,” he added.

The event was the President’s first public engagement after being out of the public eye for more than a week. – MNP (with details from Rosalie Coz)

Duterte to decide on banning online gambling in PH amid China’s call – Palace

Marje Pelayo   •   August 22, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo on Wednesday (August 21) said it is up to President Rodrigo Duterte to decide on the operations of online gambling in the country.

“We have to ask the President on this policy or issue,” Panelo told reporters.

“Hindi natin alam kung may possibility or wala. We have to ask the President,” he added.

On Tuesday (August 20), Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang has called on the Philippine government to ban all forms of online gambling.

“We have also taken note of the Philippine government’s announcement and appreciate it,” he said in a press conference in Beijing.

“We hope the Philippines will go further and ban all online gambling,” he added.

Defense officials expressed concern over proximity of Philippine Offshore Gaming Operations (POGO) near military camps arguing the possibility of Chinese workers becoming spies for Beijing.

The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (PAGCOR), meanwhile, has already stopped accepting applications for POGO licenses in the country unless underlying issues are settled.

But Panelo noted that online gambling remains legal under Philippine law.

Defense chief lauds Duterte order on foreign vessels entering PH waters

Robie de Guzman   •   August 21, 2019

One of the anti-submarine vessels which docked at Pier 15 South Harbor, Manila.

MANILA, Philippines – Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana has lauded President Rodrigo Duterte’s move to require foreign vessels to first secure a clearance from the government before entering the Philippine waters.

“That is a very good development. At least now we have some authority to enforce our laws within our territorial waters,” Lorenzana said Tuesday.

Earlier, Duterte, through spokesman Salvador Panelo, issued a directive for all foreign vessels to provide notification and get clearance from proper government authority in advance of the actual passage. He also warned foreign vessels that Manila will either get compliance in a friendly manner or enforce it in an unfriendly manner.

READ: Duterte warns foreign ships to get clearance before entering PH waters

When asked to elaborate, Panelo explained that by saying ‘unfriendly,’ it means blocking entry to any foreign vessels intruding in the Philippine territory.

He, however, clarified that the President’s order didn’t mean an automatic use of force against intruders.

“By that it means that we will ask them to move out of the place, that’s unfriendly, because before we never said anything, we just allow them, we just make protest, but this time, we will tell them, please get out of our territorial waters,” Panelo said.

Duterte’s order came after reports of Chinese warships that allegedly entered the Philippine territory, particularly in Sibutu Strait in Tawi-Tawi, without permission from the government.

Lorenzana, for his part, could not say yet the “unfriendly option” the Philippine Military could use to ward of intruders into the country’s waters. The Defense chief said he will defer the matter to the Philippine Navy. (RRD with details from Correspondent Joan Nano)

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