MMDA awaits SC decision on fate of provincial bus ban

Maris Federez   •   May 31, 2019   •   1650

File photo: MMDA personnel accost provincial buses traversing Edsa. (Photo courtesy of MMDA)

The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) announced on Wednesday that it leaves the fate of the proposed provincial bus ban up to the Supreme Court (SC).

MMDA traffic chief Bong Nebrija said in an interview that “it will depend on the order of the Court if they will tell us to scrap the policy or to hold its implementation.”

He added that they are just waiting for the court order.

Nebrija made the statement after several lawmakers filed separate petitions before the SC to stop the implementation of MMDA Regulation No. 19-002.

The order seeks to ban all provincial buses from plying along Edsa, which one of the petitioners, Albay Representative Joey Salceda, believes as “oppressive and unfair.”

Read: Salceda urges SC to halt provincial bus ban on EDSA

Nebrija further said that while there is still no court order, the MMDA will still push through with its preparations and their plans for the bus terminal closure, which the agency targets to implement in June.

“We’ll wait kung go or no go but we are still preparing, we’re still pushing with the plan. In the absence of a court order, we will push through with it,” he added.

The MMDA official believes that the impending implementation of the provincial bus ban on Edsa remains as one of the best alternatives to decongest Metro Manila roads.

Read: MMDA: Edsa bus ban one of the best options in decongesting Metro Manila

Nebrija, however, said that they still haven’t come up with a timeline from preparations to implementation as they are still yet to receive the policy guidelines from the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB).

The MMDA had implemented a dry run of the bus ban in April but suspended it in less than a month.

Read: Provincial bus ban dry run suspended—MMDA

/mbmf

LTFRB warns sanctions vs ride-hailing firms overcharging during holiday season

Robie de Guzman   •   December 19, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) has warned to revoke the permits of Transport Network Companies (TNC) who will be found guilty of exacting exorbitant fares from the riding public this holiday season.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, the LTFRB said it issued the warning following increasing complaints of lack of Transport Network Vehicle Service (TNVS) units and continuous overcharging as noted by commuters this month.

“To the TNCs, do not abuse the clamor for TNVS this holiday season, hindi kami magdadalawang isip na tanggalan kayo ng permit kung kayo ay lalabag sa mga mandato na nakasaad sa inyong kontrata.” LTFRB chairman Martin Delgra said.

Delgra said the Board has called for a meeting with the app-based ride-hailing services this week to discuss the issue.

“To date, the agency has already issued around 49,000 Provisional Authorities and 11,000 Certificate of Public Convenience (CPCs) totaling to an approximate 60,000 permits given to TNVS in order for them to operate and to accommodate the need for additional public land transport. Ang tanong dito ay bakit kakaunti ang tumatakbong units?” Delgra said.

“The TNCs have to clarify this to us and to the riding public,” he added.

The Board also reminded the ride-hailing firms to strictly follow the approve fare structure guidelines, adding that they are continuously reviewing and monitoring the fare setting computation to determine any violation.

In the fare matrix approved by the LTFRB in August, TNVS companies are allowed to charge a flag down rate of up to P40 for car sedans, up to P50 for premium sport utility vehicles (SUV), and up to P30 for hatchbacks or sub-compact vehicles.

The Board also allowed a P15 additional charge per kilometer for sedans, P18 for SUVs, and P13 for hatchbacks, aside from the P2 charge per minute of travel. It also allowed TNVS firms to double their per kilometer and per minute charge through surge pricing.

The TNCs accredited by the LTFRB are Grab, Hype, Hirna, Owto, MiCab, Go Lag, ePickMeUp, SnappyCab, and Ryd.

Earlier this week, Grab was penalized by the Philippine Competition Commission for allegedly breaching its commitments on pricing and driver cancellation rates.

Lawmakers have also called on the LTFRB to review Grab face matrix amid reports of sudden surge pricing.

LTFRB calls on TNVS online applicants to complete process before Nov. 15

Marje Pelayo   •   November 13, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) has announced a final call to all transportation network vehicle service (TNVS) applicants who registered online but did not pursue their application to officially lodge their applications until November 15 (Friday).

According to LTFRB, there were at least 4,499 online applications that remain pending from the 10,000 slots the agency opened in June and 5,000 slots it opened in July.

To proceed with the applications, the LTFRB calls on applicants to adhere to the following guidelines:

  1. Only those with complete details and information submitted via on-line registration will be accepted for filing of the application;
  2. The units subject of application must not be more than three (3) years old at the time of filing;
  3. Only the applicant is allowed to file. In case of applicant’s absence, his/her direct ascendant/descendant or spouse is allowed to represent applicant, provided they are authorized through a Special Power of Attorney (SPA), with valid Government-issued ID of both applicant and representative;
  4. Provisional Authority (PA) will be issued upon acceptance of the application.

The agency said that all applications submitted after the deadline will be considered null and void.

Malacañang said it will respect SC ruling on Marcos electoral protest

Marje Pelayo   •   October 15, 2019

(L-R) Vice President Leni Robredo and former senator Bongbong Marcos

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang said it will abide by whatever the decision of the Supreme Court (SC) regarding the electoral protest filed by former Senator Bongbong Marcos against Vice President Leni Robredo.

“Whatever the decision of the court, we should abide by it,” noted Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo.

In 2016, Marcos accused Robredo of “massive cheating” in the 2016 elections.

He lost to Robredo by some 260,000 votes, but Robredo’s camp said her lead over Marcos grew by 15,000 votes after the initial recount.

On Tuesday (October 14), the PET ordered the release of a report on the initial recount of votes.

“Hayaan ninyo na sila (Let them be). We’ll just wait and let the parties argue their case in court and PET will have to render its decision,” he added. – MNP (with reports from Rosalie Coz)

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