If LTFRB orders rollback: PUJs willing to slash fare
Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon (The Freeman) - January 20, 2016 - 9:00am

CEBU, Philippines - Amidst the continuing reduction in the prices of fuel, several transport groups in Cebu are willing to reduce the fare if ordered by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board.

“Mosanong na lang ta ana kung unsa man gani ang desisyon sa LTFRB,” said Romeo Armamento, vice president of the National Confederation of Transportworkers Union – Visayas.

NCTU-Visayas has over 1,000 member-drivers in Cebu alone.

Greg Perez, coordinator of the Pinagkaisahang Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Operators Nationwide – Cebu, echoed Armamento’s statement.

PISTON-Cebu has over 600 member-drivers.

Ryan Benjamin Yu, general manager and president of CITRASCO, also said operators like him cannot just lower the fare on their own.

“Dapat ang LTFRB mo-action na anang petition. Kadugay na ana gi-file, last year pa na. Hangtud karon, wa pa gihapon silay desisyon,” Yu said, referring to LTFRB.

CITRASCO owns 1,000 jeepney units and 200 taxi units.

LTFRB-7 Director Rey Elnar said their head office still has to issue an order on the fare reduction petition filed by former LTFRB board member Manuel Iway, currently a congressman in Negros Oriental.

Last August 7, 2015, Iway filed a petition asking LTFRB to reduce the fare in Central Visayas by P1 and another P.25 reduction for every succeeding kilometer.

At present, the minimum fare in Region 7 is P7 for the first five kilometers and P.90 in every succeeding kilometer.

If approved, the minimum fare in Central Visayas will be P6 and P.65 for the succeeding kilometer.

Iway has also sought for a P1 fare reduction for taxi fare for the succeeding 300 meters or from P3.50 to P2.50.

Iway also asked that meters of taxis in CV are recalibrated so that they will reflect a P30 flagdown rate to avoid confusion and disagreement between driver and passenger.

BUSES

But Julieto Flores, spokesperson of Cebu Provincial Bus Operators Association, does not share the stand of jeepney operators even if prices of fuel have gone down. 

“Di mi mopaubos sa pletehan kay ubos na ning daan, said Flores, also the president of the Cebu South Mini Bus Operators Association.

He explained that the fare in buses and mini buses has been much lower than what LTFRB approved since 2010.   LTFRB has authorized bus operators to collect P8.50 for the first five kilometers and P1.45 for the succeeding kilometer.

In 2010, however, bus operators struck an agreement with former Governor Gwendolyn Garcia to reduce the fare to P6 for the first five kilometers and P1.20 for the succeeding kilometer.

In January 2014, the fare for the succeeding kilometer was reduced further to P1 in a separate agreement with Governor Hilario Davide III.

“Di man sad mi ma-charged og overcharging kay ang tanang bus ug mini bus operators nagkasinabot man. Wa man sad siguro mga pasahero mo-reklamo nga mas gamay ang ilang gibayran,” Flores said.

He said that while prices of fuel have gone down, the prices of spare parts, lubricants, tires, among others, remained the same.  — /JMO (FREEMAN)

ACIRC BUT JULIETO FLORES CEBU CEBU PROVINCIAL BUS OPERATORS ASSOCIATION CEBU SOUTH MINI BUS OPERATORS ASSOCIATION CENTRAL VISAYAS DIRECTOR REY ELNAR FARE IWAY LTFRB OPERATORS
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