MANILA — The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) is set to file its second case against Pinagkaisang Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Operators Nationwide (PISTON) president, George San Mateo, within this week for staging protest actions against the Public Utility Vehicle Modernization Program (PUVMP).
The transport leader has violated Section 20 of Commonwealth Act No. 146, or the Public Service Act, for allegedly encouraging jeepney drivers and operators not to provide rides during PISTON’s transport strikes on June 5 and 30, as well as Oct. 16 and 17 last year, according to LTFRB board member Aileen Lizada.
Last December, the Quezon City Metropolitan Trial Court arrested San Mateo for violating the Public Service Act due to PISTON’s strike in February.
Meanwhile, Lizada reiterated that the ongoing “Tanggal Bulok, Tanggal Usok” campaign of the Inter-Agency Council on Traffic is aimed at ensuring an environmentally sustainable mode of public transportation in the country.
“Regarding sa reklamo ng PISTON sa ‘Tanggal Bulok, Tanggal Usok’, batas po ang RA 4136 Traffic Code at RA 8719 Clean Air Act. Ang ginagawa ng DOTr ay implementation ng mga batas na ito (Regarding PISTON’s complaint on the ‘Tanggal Bulok, Tanggal Usok’, Republic Act 4136 Traffic Code and RA 8179 or the Clean Air Act are laws. The DOTr is merely implementing these laws,” she said.
“Matagal na pong napabayaan ang mga PUJ operators. Hinayaan nilang umabot sa ganitong kalagayan ang mga jeepneys nila. Kung sinusunod lamang nila ang batas, hindi sila sana hahantong sa ‘Tanggal Bulok, Tanggal Usok’ (The PUJ operators have long been neglected. They have allowed their jeepneys to deteriorate. If they followed the law, they would not end up being covered by the ‘Tanggal Bulok, Tanggal Usok’ campaign.) They should be responsible public utility vehicle operators,” Lizada pointed out.
PISTON has been urging the government to junk the PUVMP as they believe that this would only benefit private corporate interests. It has instead proposed a people-oriented and nationalized mass transport system that would be inclusive of all transportation shareholders in the country. Aerol John Pateña/PNA-northboundasia.com