LTFRB urged to decide on moratorium on ‘colorum’ TNVS apprehensions

Robie de Guzman   •   July 12, 2019   •   1210

Courtesy : Laban TNVS Facebook page

MANILA, Philippines – A group of ride-sharing app drivers and operators on Friday urged the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) to decide on the implementation of a moratorium on the apprehension of transport network vehicle service (TNVS) vehicles with incomplete registrations.

The Laban TNVS on Friday morning simultaneously sounded their horns as a part of their protest caravan staged in front of the LTFRB main office and the House of Representatives.

The group called on LTFRB chairman Martin Delgra to fulfill his promise of immediately deciding on their appeal to implement a moratorium on apprehensions while their members are processing their applications.

TNVS drivers and operators met with the LTFRB on Tuesday to discuss their concerns following their staging of a ‘transport holiday’ on Monday (July 8).

READ: Ride-hailing app drivers go offline Monday against phase out of ‘hatchbacks’

“Pagkatapos ng dialogue, ang pangako ni Chairman Delgra, within the week ay ilalabas ng board ang desisyon nila tungkol sa dalawang bagay. Una, ‘yung no apprehension, moratorium sa apprehension ng mga TNVS na tinuturing nilang colorum… At yung pangalawa, yung sa usapin ng hatchback,” said Atty. Ariel Inton, president of the Lawyers for Commuters Safety and Protection group.

Although they were able to bring their sentiments before the LTFRB, the group said they are yet to feel any assurance from Delgra’s statements.

“There was no assurance doon sa statement niya. That’s the reason why nandito kami to tell them na naghihintay kami sa kasagutan nila na dapat maging at least maging favorable sa amin,” said Eric Gabriel Fernandez, convenor of the LabanTNVS.

TNVS drivers and operators said the protest aims to air their opposition against LTFRB’s “inconsistent” policies and processing in terms of TNVS registration and application.

They are also protesting the agency’s alleged non-implementation of Memorandum Circular 2018-005 which allows hatchback-type vehicles to operate as TNVS.

The group warned to conduct continuous protest caravans should the LTFRB fail to announce its decision on the matter. (with details from Asher Cadapan Jr.)

DENR to issue import ban on recyclable waste

Marje Pelayo   •   August 12, 2019

Disposal of the 26 containers from Chronic Plastic Inc., Ontario, Canada at a sanitary landfill of Metro Clark Waste Management Corp. in Capas, Tarlac. (Courtesy: MCWMC)

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) will issue a moratorium or temporary ban on importation of recyclable waste into the country.

Environment Undersecretary Benny Antiporda said the moratorium will run for three months while the Department is reviewing the import procedures and regulations on such shipments.

Antiporda said the DENR is making sure that there won’t be a repeat of the incident involving the illegal entry of imported garbage from Canada and South Korea.

The official, meanwhile, is proposing for P3-M cash bond from companies that would import recyclable wastes before they are issued a permit.

The cash bond will be used should any problem occur with the imported shipment.

“Lugi ang bansa diyan dahil ang tagal naka stock diyan sa atin kung saan merong mga dapat bayaran na hindi na nabayaran, (It’s our loss if [the shipment] ends up idle while there are dues to pay),” Antiporda argued.

Meanwhile, Antiporda said the DENR might allow the importation of second hand or used electronic appliance provided that all parts will be reused.

Kapag iyan ay contaminated, iyan ay waste na. Hindi na siya recyclable, (If its contaminated then it’s already waste and is no longer recyclable),” Antiporda noted.

While the moratorium is in effect, the DENR will inspect the recycling plants of all importing firms. – MNP (with details from Rey Pelayo)

QC Court stops implementation of Edsa provincial bus ban

Robie de Guzman   •   August 2, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – A local court has temporarily stopped the implementation of the highly-contested proposal to ban provincial buses from plying Epifanio delos Santos (Edsa).

In an order dated July 31 and released on August 2, the Quezon City Regional Trial Court Branch 223 has granted the writ of preliminary injunction filed by 18 transport groups against the scheme.

The QC court said it found “just cause” to stop the ban and schedule the case for hearings.

The court said it needs to hear the side of the defendants of the case – the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) considering that “the matter on hand greatly impacts the welfare of the public.”

The proposed policy of the MMDA and the LTFRB prohibits provincial buses from traversing Edsa to decongest traffic. It also seeks to revoke business permits and shut down the operation of all provincial bus terminals located along Edsa.

The LTFRB also amended last month the routes for provincial buses traveling along the major thoroughfare.

A dry run for the policy is supposed to begin on August 7.

The court notes in its order that these measures would have “far-reaching effects” to the businesses, employees and other contracts of provincial bus companies. It added that the shortened routes would also affect the salary of employees.

“While as a rule, the right to income or earning does not prevail over public welfare, in the instant case since the Court has as yet not been presented with a clear basis or sufficient justification for the issuances, there is no reason to consider these issuances to have priority over the Plaintiffs’ rights as well as those that would suffer from their implementation,” the order read.

The court also asked the MMDA and the LTFRB on why point-to-point (P2P) buses are given privilege of plying Edsa even if their sizes were similar to those of regular buses.

It further said that since the said agencies failed to file a response, “no explanation or study has been presented to this Court to aid the latter in determining whether the provincial buses are indeed the cause of ‘horrendous traffic’ and if their ban and closure of their terminals is the best solution.”

“In view of the absence of any evidence on behalf of the Public Defendants, the evidence provided so far by the Plaintiffs tend to show that indeed, there was abuse in the issuance of the subject LTFRB MC and MMDA Regulation,” the order read.

The court gave the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG), which represents the MMDA and the LTFRB, until August 14 to file a response to the case.

Anti-Red Tape body tells LTFRB to explain irregularities in TNVS policies

Robie de Guzman   •   July 24, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) on Wednesday asked the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) to explain alleged irregularities in its policies for the application of permit for transport network vehicle service (TNVS).

In its show-cause order, the ARTA directed LTFRB Chairman Martin Delgra to explain within three days the purported delays in the processing of permits and other irregularities as complained by TNVS applicants.

Based on its order, the anti-red tape agency said that among the other irregularities “identified and determined” to have been committed by the LTFRB was its failure to enforce Memorandum Circular No. 2018-005; failure to conduct hearings and render decisions for an unreasonable length of time on applications for certificate of public convenience to operate TNVS; and implementing abrupt changes in the requirements and procedures for TNVS application without due notice to the public.

The ARTA said failure to explain the aforementioned issues could be tantamount to defying President Rodrigo Duterte’s order to stop red tape in the government.

In a message to reporters, Delgra confirmed he has received the notice and assured to submit an explanation addressing the allegations within the deadline.

ARTA’s order came after groups of TNVS driver and operators went offline earlier this month in protest of LTFRB’s alleged inconsistencies in its policies in terms of TNVS application and registration. (with details from Joan Nano)

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