Press Release
July 21, 2017

Amid Grab & Uber restrictions, phasing out of old jeepneys, still crowded MRT & LRT...

Following the controversial move to restrict Grab and Uber services and phase out old jeepneys, Senator Sonny Angara has filed a resolution calling for an assessment of the country's mass transport system to ensure that the country's transport policies ultimately promote the welfare of the riding public.

"Rinig po natin ang mga reklamo ng commuters sa sistema ng transportasyon kaya't nakikiusap sila na huwag naman sanang mawala ang ride-hailing services. Pati ang mga jeepney na siyang pinakamura at accessible sa publiko ay plano na ring baguhin," Angara said.

"We must look into the state of public transportation first to ensure that it is efficient, dependable, safe and affordable. Hindi dapat pinahihirapan ang publiko sa kanilang pang-araw-araw na pagbibiyahe," he added.

The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board has ordered Grab and Uber to deactivate their more than 50,000 so-called colorum drivers.

Filipino commuters rallied support for Grab and Uber, stressing that ride-sharing applications offer better service, safety, convenience, and courtesy that other transportation services such as public taxis failed to provide.

"Law and rules must adjust and be interpreted to favor new technologies which make people's lives more convenient," said Angara, who led the Senate investigation last year on the alleged overcharging by airport taxis. As a result, Grab and Uber were allowed to enter NAIA to drop off and pick up passengers.

Meanwhile, the newly launched jeepney modernization program was met with protests from transport groups, which called for the deferment of its implementation, saying that small jeepney operators do not have enough money to finance the conversion of jeepneys to solar-powered vehicles.

"While PUV modernization is integral to the traffic management solution of the country, we must allay the fears of the vulnerable members of our public transport sector by ensuring that adequate social protection measures are in place. Dahil nangangamba ang mga tsuper at malilit na operators na mawawalan sila ng hanapbuhay kapag tuluyan nang ipagbawal ang pagbyahe ng mga lumang jeepney," the lawmaker said.

The country's rail transit system, on the other hand, has come under intense public scrutiny in recent years with commuters regularly complaining of long waiting lines, passenger congestion, defective coaches, and poor maintenance.

Traffic and congestion problem in the country have also been identified by the current administration as a "crisis that impedes the mobility of people, goods and services and threatens the livability of our cities."

"Mobility has been a key concern of our country. We should fast-track our projects on improving and modernizing our public transport system so that Filipinos will have a viable transportation option," Angara said.

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