Transport group asks gov’t to extend LTFRB’s service-contracting program

Futch Anthony Inso June 29,2021 - 06:18 PM

Passengers board buses at the Cebu South Bus Terminal in this file photo.

CEBU CITY, Philippines — A transport group is urging the government to extend the implementation of the service-contracting program of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB).

Service contracting is funded under Republic Act no. 11519 or the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act, also known as Bayanihan 2.

Jaime Aguilar, secretary-general of the National Confederation of Transportworkers Union (NCTU), said that Bayanihan 2 will already expire on Wednesday, June 30, 2021, along with the service-contracting program which was implemented by LTFRB.

He said that out of the P3 billion budget for the service-contracting program for public utility jeepneys (PUJs), only P1.2 billion were spent.

Aguilar said that if the government will extend the program, this will benefit more jeepney drivers, especially in this time of pandemic brought by the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).

“Sa LTFRB, sa pag-implement ng service-contracting, marami ang naging challenge kasi bago nga itong programang ito at naintidahan natin na maraming adjustment. Kaya nga kailangan natin siyang i-extend kasi malaking bagay ang magagawa, game changer natin itong service-contracting,” Aguilar said.

LTFRB-7 regional director Eduardo Montealto Jr. explained that service contracting has two components, which are the “Libreng Sakay” for buses, tourist vans, and modern jeepneys; and net contracting for traditional jeepneys.

In net contracting, the drivers will be paid P11 per kilometer while they can still collect fares from their passengers. Each driver can avail up to 200 kilometers in the program which will be monitored through a mobile application.

Their payment will also be directly downloaded through the online banking system, such as G-Cash and Paymaya.

For Libreng Sakay, buses will receive a payment of P82.50 per kilometer and P52.50 for tourist vans and modern jeepneys. Each driver can avail up to 230 kilometers in the entire program.

Montealto said that they are already allocating P400 million for the Libreng Sakay for their payout which they will start to process on July 1, 2021, or after the expiration of the program.

He said that as of the moment, they haven’t received any information for the possible extension of the program.

“Ugma pana nato mahibaw-an. Ugma sa gabie. Aprubahan na sa presidente, magpasar siya ug balaod sa Congress nga i-extend ang Bayanihan 2,” he added.    /rcg

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TAGS: Bayanihan 2, LTFRB, NCTU, Republic Act no. 11519, service-contracting program, transport group

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