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PISTON-Cebu, other transport groups protest series of oil price hikes

By: Mary Rose Sagarino - CDN Digital Correspondent | March 08,2022 - 06:18 PM

PISTON rally

Members of PISTON-Cebu Chapter and Panaghugpong Kadamay Cebu staged a rally in Barangay Paknaan, Mandaue City to protest the series of oil price hikes.

MANDAUE CITY, Philippines — The Pinagkaisang Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Operator Nationwide (PISTON)-Cebu Chapter and Panaghugpong Kadamay Cebu, on Tuesday, March 8, staged a protest beside a gasoline station in Barangay Paknaan Mandaue City, to object to the series of oil price hikes.

Oil companies implemented today their biggest price hike yet of up to almost P6.

Shell, Caltex, Seaoil, and CleanFuel have imposed an increase of P5.85 per liter for diesel, P3.60 per liter for gasoline, and P4.10 per liter for kerosene while Unioil is implementing a lower price increase of P3.85 per liter on diesel and P2 per liter on gasoline.

Greg Perez, PISTON-Cebu head, said the increases have a very big negative effect not only on the public transport drivers but also on the ordinary people as it will have a domino effect.

The groups are calling on the repeal of the Deregulation Law and suspending the excise tax on petroleum products. Perez said without an excise tax, the price of fuel would be a bit lower.

Republic Act No. 8479 also known as the Downstream Oil Industry Deregulation Act of 1998, removed government control on the pricing, exportation, and importation of petroleum products, which allow oil companies to dictate oil prices.

Under the Republic Act No. 10963, or the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion, the excise tax for diesel is P6 per liter, P10 per liter for gas, P5 per liter for kerosene, and P3 per kilo for LPG.

Perez said they have yet to decide if they will be asking for an increase in fare because this will clearly affect the ordinary people who are still struggling against the pandemic and the recent typhoon.

The transport groups are also calling on the government for assistance for the drivers.

In a separate interview, Atty. Russ Mark Gamallo, director of the Department of Energy Visayas field office, said they are planning to revive the Pantawid Pasada Program to give subsidies to affected drivers.

Gamallo said the oil companies have also cooperated and promised to give rebates to the drivers especially the public transport drivers.

“The government have thought of ways nga ma mitigate ang effects sa high fuel prices nato,” said Gamallo.      /rcg


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TAGS: Cebu Daily News, cebu news, excise tax, PISTON Cebu, price increase, protest, PUJ drivers

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