Proposed P800 daily installment for new jeepney units still too steep for drivers

UNTV News   •   October 17, 2017   •   19321

Passenger Jeepney

MANILA, Philippines – Bong Nasul has been a driver/operator of jeepney for more than two decades now.

In his everyday operation from five in the morning to three in the afternoon plying the route of Guadalupe-Fort Bonifacio, he earns P1,700 — but not all daily earnings go to him, as he spends P600 for gasoline.

With this, he takes home P1,100 only for his family needs like the daily expenses of his two children who are now in college, food and medicines.

This is the reason why he is not in favor of the government’s Jeepney Modernization Program.

Bong said an ordinary jeepney driver and operator like him cannot handle the P800 he has to pay daily for the purchase of a modernized jeepney unit. Paying the said amount has been the proposal of the government so ordinary jeepney drivers and operators could afford new models of jeepneys.

“P800? I said the boundary for my jeepney is also P800. What will be left for me if I have to pay that P800 for the daily installment? How can I support my family? When your brakes get broken, the break bonding of the fuel, and oil is too expensive nowadays,” Bong said.

The Department of Transportation (DOTR) explained it would not be difficult for the drivers to pay the said amount.

The government vowed to provide a P80,000 Subsidy for the first 250 jeepney drivers.

DOTR Undersecretary for Road Transport Thomas Orbos said once their vehicles are replaced by the new ones, many passengers will be encouraged to ride it, and hence may result in increased earnings.

Orbos explained the drivers can save more in terms of paying for gasoline as modern jeepneys use Euro-4 engine.

“In the new jeepney you will have more passengers. In fact from 16 it will increase to 22. It is more fuel efficient given that it uses Euro-4 engine. We are looking at a 43% savings on fuel consumption,” Orbos said.

The DOTR also plans to create a cooperative that would help jeepney drivers in paying the modern jeepneys.

This is through the placement of advertisement in jeepney units, so they could earn more.

Orbos further noted that fixing routes could also help in lessening the intense competition among public utility vehicles.

“The route rationalization will also determine how many should be plying on a particular route, whether bus or jeepney. What’s happening now is that they are competing with the same passengers,” Orbos said.

DOTR also suggested that cooperatives pay jeepney drivers salaries.

However, for drivers like Bong, the question is how much is the salary being offered.

“If they will give me a salary of P1,000 daily I will agree to it,” Bong said.

Based on the agreement of the Land Transportation Office and several government banks, a driver can loan from P1.4 million to P1.6-million to buy modern jeepney units.

They can pay units within 7 years, with a 6% interest rate.

For now, the government continues to create an effective mechanism to help the drivers keep pace with the Jeepney Modernization Program. – Joan Nano | UNTV News & Rescue

 

DOTr, seafarer groups to provide seamen with affordable transient home in NCR

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 18, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Transportation (DOTr) and several seafarer groups on Thursday (June 17) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to provide affordable temporary living quarters for seafarers.

The DOTr, the Marino Partylist, and the Associated Marine Officers’ and Seamen’s Union of the Philippines (AMOSUP) forged an alliance by signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on CONDOTEL for Seafarers during the celebration of the Maritime Industry Authority’s (MARINA) 47th Anniversary.

The initiative will give seafarers decent temporary living quarters in the NCR while waiting to be deployed onboard ships, returning from deployment, and those employed in inter-island shipping.

Transportation Secretary Arthur P. Tugade, Marino Partylist’s Hon. Sandro Gonzalez, and AMOSUP’s Dr. Conrado F. Oca signed the MOU, solidifying their partnership in providing Filipino seafarers affordable temporary living facilities in close proximity to the MARINA and other maritime enterprises.

“Napakagandang pangitain na kung nagse-celebrate tayo ng Anibersaryo, binibigyang importansya ang mga marino. In fact, the highlight of today’s gathering can be summed up into two. Una ay ang pagpirma ng Memorandum of Understanding regarding CONDOTEL na pinapakita natin sa mga marino – na para bang sinasabi ng MARINA – nandirito at gagawa kami ng gusali na kung saan doon kayo mananatili, doon kayo maninirahan at doon kayo gagabayan. Napakagandang pangitain,” Secretary Tugade emphasized in his inspirational message.

DOTr Secretary Arthur  Tugade recognized the efforts of Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) General Manager Jay Daniel Santiago for providing the land for the CONDOTEL, as well as the commitment of the Marino Partylist and AMOSUP for the adequate budget to be made available for the construction of the said building.

Marino Partylist Rep. Gonzalez said the project aims to provide seafarers affordable living quarters after several of them experienced eviction from their dorms in Metro Manila due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) scare.

“During the early months of this pandemic, seafarers staying in Metro Manila were evicted from their dorms and hostiles for failure to pay for their lodging because of the misconception that they came from abroad, they were carriers of COVID-19. That is our motivation for this project – the Seafarer’s CONDOTEL. With this MOU, it gives me comfort that this will never happen again,” he said.

The MOU signing was witnessed by MARINA Administrator Vice Admiral Robert Empedrad (AFP, Ret) and PPA General Manager Jay Daniel R. Santiago. AAC

DOTr to review increase of passenger capacity amid easing of quarantine restrictions

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 16, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Transportation (DOTr) is looking into increasing passenger capacity in public transportation as quarantine restrictions ease in several areas in the Philippines.

DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade said during a virtual presser on Wednesday (June 16) that public transportation is currently at 50% capacity.

“Paunti-unti dadagdan naitn iyan at hihingi tayo ng approval sa mga kinauukulan, higit sa lahat sa IATF at sa mga LGU,” he said.

(We will gradually increase [the capacity] and we will request approval from respective authorities, especially from the IATF [Inter-Agency Task Force] and LGUs [local government units].)

Meanwhile, the department said they will continue to increase the number of buses available to accommodate more passengers with limited capacity and to lessen congestion.

Tugade also said he has instructed his team to review if increasing the passenger capacity by 5% to 10% is possible.

“Naumpisahan na iyan. Mayroon na kaming tinatawag na pag-aaral at mag-approach kami sa IATF na kung puwede dagdagan, let’s say 5%, 10% and we make it gradual. Hindi natin pwedeng biglain iyan,” he said.

(We have started it. We are already conducting studies and we will approach the IATF if we can increase the capacity by 5% or 10% and we make it gradual. We cannot rush this.) AAC

DOT clarifies tourists of all ages from NCR Plus can still travel to Boracay until June 30

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 16, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Tourism (DOT) has clarified that tourists of all ages in the National Capital Region (NCR) Plus are free to travel to Boracay and other tourist destinations under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) until June 30.

In a statement, Tourism Secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat made the clarification following reports that some tourism stakeholders may not be aware that restrictions had been relaxed, even for seniors and young travelers, since June 1. She said this would further help tourism workers to return to their jobs.

“This extended liberal movement of people will allow the DOT and local government units to revive the jobs of displaced tourism workers,” Puyat said.

The NCR Plus still remains under general community quarantine (GCQ) with varying degrees of restrictions. The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) also extended its resolution to allow the movement of persons traveling in and out of NCR Plus until June 30.

The DOT said that, based on IATF Resolution 121, interzonal travel will be allowed in areas under GCQ and MGCQ for leisure purposes. However, tourists coming from Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal may only undertake point-to-point travel to GCQ and MGCQ areas

Meanwhile, Puyat urged tourism enterprises to abide by the guidelines of the IATF. This includes implementing 30% to 50% limited capacity in museums and outdoor tourist attractions.

Essential meetings and other social events such as weddings, birthday celebrations, are allowed in GCQ areas at up to 50% capacity, except for NCR and Bulacan. Essential meetings in the NCR and Bulacan will only have 30% capacity while social events will be at 10% capacity.

“The amended guidelines from the Task Force also comes with the responsibility to strictly adhere to the minimum health and safety protocols when traveling,” Puyat said. AAC 

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