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Coalition urges adoption of service contracting for transport sector

A coalition of 134 organizations and 11,000 transport advocates on Saturday called on the government to implement service contracting to ensure an adequate supply of public transportation under the GCQ.

The Move as One coalition said that under a service contract model, operators and drivers will be paid by the government a per kilometer fee to run the routes.

“Service contracting is not new to the transport sector or the government. In fact, several cities contracted jeeps and tricycles to provide free transport for essential workers during the lockdown," a member said in a statement.

"DOTr used a service contracting model to augment the services of EDSA MRT when it was in crisis,” Angie Mata, Manager of Mandaue-Sabang-Danao Multicab Operators and Driver's Multi-Purpose Cooperative said.

Furthermore, the contract model "removes the risk of the boundary system where the income... depends solely on the number of passengers they have."

The coalition warned that, without the model, many transport workers will suffer losses even after hours of labor due to the limited passenger capacity amid the threat of the coronavirus disease 2019.

Due to this, the coalition was proposing to invest P30 billion to contract thousands of public utility vehicles nationwide.

"This will protect the jobs of our 2.7 million land transport workers in the country by providing them a stable source of income independent of the number of passengers they have,” the coalition said.

"The P30 billion is part of the P110 Biyahenihan Package that the coalition proposes to reform the country’s public transportation system amidst the coronavirus crisis," it added. — DVM, GMA News