The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) on Friday reported that at least 61 percent of the targeted 158,000 public utility jeepneys (PUUs) commonly called jeepneys across the country have joined a consolidated entity in compliance with the government’s jeepney modernization program.
In the UV (Express units) subsector, some 72 percent have also formed cooperatives,” LTFRB Technical Division chief Joel Bolano said during a public briefing.
The franchise of most traditional jeepneys will expire on June 30, the LTFRB said.
After extending the deadline four times for the operators to form cooperatives for the purchase of modern jeepneys, the LTFRB said there will be no more extensions.
Bolano said joining a consolidated entity which could either be a cooperative or corporation is a requirement in securing loans to acquire new units.
“Isa sa basic purpose talaga bakit kailangan nila magkaroon ng consolidated entity or operation ng under consolidated entity dahil magiging sustainable at viable ang kanilang operation sa kanilang mga route kasi magkakaroon sila ng fleet management para sa deployment ng kanilang mga units,” Bolano said.
“Yung salary ng ating jeepney drivers ay hindi na siya based on boundary kundi magiging fixed salary based na sila aside from other benefits under the consolidated entity,” he added.
Bolano also said traditional jeepneys can still be used as long as it has joined a cooperative.
The LTFRB earlier said only the operators of traditional jeeps who are in the process of transitioning into a cooperative or corporation will be exempted from the June 30 deadline.
“So kung sakali po after June 30 mababa ‘yung compliance, nakahanda naman po ang LTFRB. In fact, may mga kinacraft na rin pong policy guidance kaya lang po ang tinitignan ni LTFRB ‘yung compliance this time until June para isa rin sa basehan ng mga guidelines na ilalabas po before June 30,” he said.
Bolano said discussions were still ongoing on the opening of 100,000 transport-network-vehicle-service (TNVS) slots meant to meet the commuters’ demand.
Meanwhile, Liga ng Transportasyon at Operators sa Pilipinas (LTOP) president Orlando Marquez appealed to the government to provide more funds for the public transport sector.
Marquez also appealed for the passage of the Public Transport Consumer Tax.
He said additional funds were needed to push the public transport modernization to provide commuters a “convenient, safe, and affordable” public transport.
“Sana itong public transport, lalo pang bigyan ng pondo dahil ito po ‘yung trabahador na sineserbisyuhan namin, ito po ‘yung bumubuhay ng ekonomiya ng ating bansa. Kami po ay nakasuporta sa lahat ng ikagaganda sa ating public transport,” he said at the public briefing on Thursday.
Bolano said the certificate of public conveyance (CPC) will be reverted to the state and awarded to those who have consolidated.
The cooperatives were meant to help operators afford the purchase of modern jeeps worth at least P2.6 million each through loans from financial institutions.
Only operators who are in the process of transitioning into a cooperative or corporation will be allowed to ply their old jeepneys beyond June 30.
They have, however, until December to finish the consolidation process.
“We won’t allow a situation where our commuters won’t have any option for their transportation. The board will address that,” Bolano said.