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2-day transport strike to start Monday

The transport group’s president Jun Magno confirmed that the jeepney strike will push through to protest the government’s plan to phase out jeepneys aged 15 years and older. File photo

MANILA, Philippines — The planned two-day transport strike is set to begin on Monday according to transport group, Stop and Go Coalition.

The transport group’s president Jun Magno confirmed that the jeepney strike would push through to protest the government’s plan to phase out jeepneys aged 15 years and older.

“Tuloy po ang aming pagkilos bukas sa pagtutol po ng ating operator na pasanin ang P1.6 million at P800 a day. Medyo mabigat po yan sa kanila,” Magno said in a radio interview with dzMM. He was referring to the amount needed for the modernization of the public utility jeepneys.

According to Magno, the transport strike will start early Monday and all operators regardless of the group they belong to are expected to join their cause. He said operators are slated to head to the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board office to stage a rally there.

Asked why there is a need for a two-day transport strike, Magno said their previous protests were neglected and they wanted to let the president know how the government’s plan could affect the public and the operators.

“Para ipakita sa kanya (President Rodrigo Duterte) kung ga’no kahirap ang mangyayari samin kung ito’y (modernization) matupad na. Kung di kami gagalaw ganoon din ang bagsak namin, wala din kaming hanap-buhay,” Magno said.

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The Stop and Go Coalition clarified that it is open for negotiation with the transport authorities.

“Hangga’t maari kami po’y nakikipagusap naman. Walang intensyon na maperwisyo ang mamayan. Kundi po namin gagawin mapeperwisyo kayo at mapeperwisyo ang operator,” he added.

In a separate radio interview, Magno said the Stop and Go Coalition is not amenable to replace jeepneys with electric jeepneys. 

“Walang pumayag diyan kahit sino. Kung kami’y pumayag bakit kami mag-strike ngayon,” he said.

Government to offer P80,000 subsidy

LTFRB board member and spokesperson Aileen Lizada appealed to the coalition to heed their call for modernization saying it is for the benefit of the riding public.

She also assured the operators that they would be given a P80,000 subsidy to shoulder the modernization of the PUJs and that their mode of transport would not be phased out.

Lizada said the modernization program will not happen overnight as it is “20 years in the making.”

“Inaayos lang namin. What kind of vehicles do we owe the riding public. Sana i-consider niyo ‘yung offer namin,” the LTFRB spokesperson said.

Meanwhile, Lizada said there would be “libreng sakay” for the commuters on Monday. She said there would be 90 to 100 LTFRB bus operators who would offer free rides in strategic areas within Metro Manila.

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