Malacañang suspends classes, gov’t work due to 2-day nationwide transport strike
MANILA, Philippines — The transport group, Pinagkaisang Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Operator Nationwide (Piston) was undeterred by a pending complaint against their leader, George San Mateo, for violating Commonwealth Act 146 or Public Service Law that was initially filed by Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) for the transport strike the group held last February that affected a lot of passengers.
On Monday, the group will begin their two-day nationwide transport strike opposing the government’s jeepney modernization program.
To avoid inconveniencing passengers, Malacañang has suspended work in government offices and classes in all private and public schools nationwide on Monday.
Even the Supreme Court, House of Representative and the Senate also declared work suspension.
The Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) prepared 41 buses and trucks to provide free rides. Some private buses are also on standby.
“There are six staging areas, with government vehicles for libreng-sakay and private buses non-aircon 10, Aircon 12 will be stationed,” said LTFRB Spokesperson Atty. Aileen Lizada.
Meanwhile, the MMDA also suspended the number coding scheme implementation today on all public and private vehicles. This is to give opportunity to all motorists to travel and not be inconvenienced by the transport strike.
The LTFRB gave another warning to remove the franchise of all drivers and operators participating in the transport strike. — Mirasol Abogadil | UNTV News & Rescue
LTFRB adds 20 more buses to EDSA Busway Carousel
MANILA, Philippines — The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) has added 20 more buses to EDSA Busway Carousel.
LTFRB Chairman Atty. Martin Delgra III said this is in response to the long queues brought by the number of passengers wanting to avail of the free ride program launched by the Department of Transportation (DOTr).
“Dumadami talaga ang pasahero, we have to admit that dahil na rin sa libreng sakay. Kung pagpipiliin po ng pasahero kung saan siya sasakay, sa tren ba na may bayad o sa bus na walang bayad especially along EDSA nakakasiguro ako na pipili tayo doon sa walang bayad,” he said.
(The number of passengers is increasing. We have to admit that this is due to the free rides. If passengers will choose between using the train or the free bus, especially along EDSA, I can assure you they will choose the free ride.)
From the previous 41,000 passengers riding the EDSA Busway Carousel daily, the LTFRB reported that it has increased to 182,000 passengers per day.
The agency is also looking into increasing the capacity per bus to accommodate more passengers and help lessen long queues.
Meanwhile, the DOTr is reviewing the possibility of removing the requirement of wearing face shields in buses as long as the other health and safety protocols will still be followed. –AAC (with reports from Marvin Calas)
DOTr, LTFRB address concerns over long queues at MRT, EDSA Carousel Stations
MANILA, Philippines—The Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) said they have taken steps to address the long queues in MRT-3 stations and in EDSA Carousel Stations.
In a Facebook post, the DOTr explained that the long lines were prompted by the heavy rain on Friday (June 11).
Vehicular accidents were also reported which contributed to an unusual traffic build-up. The department also noted that waiting time and queuing are inevitable especially during rush hour or weekend.
“Lines of commuters at the MRT-3 Ortigas and Ayala stations that Friday night were in normal condition. The commuters in the photos lined-up to board buses at the EDSA Carousel stations, which are also located at the said MRT-3 stations,” the DOTr said.
DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade has ordered the DOTr Road Sector and the LTFRB to implement protocols to avoid long queues. This includes adding more transport marshals, requesting EDSA Busway Consortium to deploy the maximum number of authorized bus units, and deploy more “rescue skip buses” to congested EDSA Bus Stops to pick up passengers especially during rush hours.
Meanwhile, the DOTr Road Sector, Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA), and local government units (LGUs) concerned shall likewise meet and further discuss various measures to prevent traffic congestion that affect the operation of the EDSA Busway. AAC
LTFRB reiterates responsibility of bus firms to pay employees’ salaries
MANILA, Philippines—The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) reiterated the responsibility of bus firms to pay the salaries of their employees.
During a public briefing on Wednesday (June 9), LTFRB Executive Director Joel Bolano said the agency is open to helping drivers coordinate with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) to raise their concerns.
“Iyon pong mga konduktor po natin ay kailangan bayaran para sa kanilang serbisyo. At kung sakali pong may displacement sa kanilang kumpanya pwede po sila i-refer sa DOLE para sa ibang hanaybuhay na pwedeng pasukan,” he said.
(Our conductors should be paid for their service. In case they are displaced by the company, we can refer them to DOLE for other job opportunities.)
A protest was staged on Monday (June 7) by several drivers and conductors, from various bus firms, calling for the release of their salaries. They said the release of their salaries has been delayed for months. AAC