By Glazyl Masculino
BACOLOD CITY – The city government here deployed its vehicles to assist the riding public after some operators and drivers of the traditional public utility jeepneys (PUJs) and public utility vehicles (PUVs) that lacked franchises did not operate on Monday, Nov. 7.
This, after the Land Transportation Office (LTO) and the Land Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB)-6 conducted an operation against jeepneys without permits or with incomplete documents in various areas here.
These PUJs and PUVs decided to stop plying the streets yesterday to avoid being penalized, as they learned about the massive apprehension by authorities against non-compliant operators.
Five office vehicles, two city buses, two rescue vehicles from the city government, and another vehicle from a corporate firm were deployed to accommodate some stranded passengers because of the limited number of PUJs plying the streets yesterday.
Some schools here also announced that face-to-face classes were suspended yesterday to prevent students from experiencing inconvenience in commuting. The classes were conducted virtually.
Barangays that responded to Libre Sakay yesterday were Barangays 8, Taculing, Estefania, and Mansilingan.
In June 2017, the Department of Transportation (DoTr) issued Department Order No. 2017-011 (Re: Omnibus Guidelines on the Planning and Identification of Public Road Transportation Services and Franchise Issuance) or the Public Utility Vehicle Modernization Program (PUVMP), a flagship program of the administration of former President Rodrigo Duterte.
It aimed to phase out traditional jeepneys, and other PUVs at least 15 years old and replace them with more comfortable and environment-friendly vehicles in three years.
As of Nov. 7, 123 modernized jeepneys were plying the streets here, based on a report from the LTFRB, which was cited by the City’s Public Information Office.
Mayor Alfredo Abelardo “Albee” Benitez has yet to issue a statement regarding the transport situation here.
The transport sector is planning to talk to him regarding the matter.