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Wednesday, May 29, 2024

House bloc seeks scrapping of PUV modernization bid

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The Makabayan Bloc at the House of Representatives on Thursday filed a resolution urging the Land Transportation and Franchising and Regulatory Board to junk Department Order 2017-011, or the Omnibus Franchising Guidelines (OFG) that mandate franchise consolidation by Dec. 31, 2023.

Rep. Raoul Manuel of Kabataan, a member of the bloc, said that House Resolution 1506 calls for the scrapping of the PUV modernization program. He said the OFG contains the guidelines for implementation of the PUV modernization program.

The program, he said, drew protests from drivers and small-time operators because of the forced consolidation of franchises towards “monopoly control of a few big companies resulting in a massacre of livelihood for thousands of families.”

Driver-operators who complied with the program were also affected because it actually worsened their livelihood, Manuel said.

He said the Pasig-Mandaluyong-Quiapo Operators and Drivers Alliance (Pamaqoda) Transport Service Cooperative did not generate income, and its drivers did not receive dividends in the last three years after the franchise consolidation.

“This modernization is for large corporations. If the government gives support and help to the local jeep manufacturers, we can afford to stop importing,” he said.

“The Kabataan Partylist stands with small-time operators, drivers and commuters through this resolution to stop this bogus modernization program,” Manuel said.

He said that instead of modernization, “we call to rehabilitate and improve existing models of jeepneys and other vehicles used in public transportation and in the long term, we need to pursue national industrialization to develop a safe, affordable and efficient public mass transport system.”

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