By Raymond Carl Dela Cruz
MANILA – The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) called on transport groups to formally file a petition for a fare hike for public utility jeepneys (PUJ) during a hearing with PUJ transport groups on Tuesday.
In a statement, the LTFRB told the transport groups to file a petition instead of sending a letter to the board.
“Idaan ang kanilang kahilingan sa tama at mas angkop na proseso alinsunod sa Public Service Act, sa pamamagitan ng paghain ng pormal na petisyon sa loob ng limang araw (They should go through the proper process in accordance with the Public Service Act, through the filing of a formal petition within five days),” it said.
It also called on the commuting public to send comments and suggestions on the requested fare hike.
During the hearing, LTFRB chair Teofilo Guadiz III emphasized that the board is open to considering a fare hike due to the consecutive oil price hikes in recent weeks.
“Gayunman, kinakailangan din muna balansehin ang epekto nito para sa mga komyuter (However, there needs to be balance in terms of its effects on commuters),” Guadiz said.
He said a fare hike, after being reviewed and validated by the LTFRB, would still undergo further review by other economic agencies, such as the National Economic and Development Authority.
Earlier, the Liga ng Transportasyon at Operators sa Pilipinas, Stop & Go Transport Coalition Inc. and the Federation of Jeepney Operators and Drivers Association of the Philippines submitted a letter requesting the LTFRB to raise fares by PHP2 for all PUJs nationwide.
The groups cited the continuous spate of oil price hikes every week as the reason for their request for fare adjustment. (PNA)