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LTFRB OKs P1 provisional fare hike for PUJs

The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) on Tuesday approved a P1 provisional increase in the minimum fare for public utility jeepneys (PUJs) effective Sunday, October 8.

The decision was reached following a hearing between the LTFRB, some transportation and commuter groups on the fare hike petitions filed amid rising fuel prices, Glen Juego reported on Super Radyo dzBB.

“Effective ng October 8 at 1 in the morning, effective ang increase na provisional remedy. Piso lang po. Ibig sabihin ng provisional, temporary lang ito hanggang hindi pa nagi-improve and price ng gasolina,” said LTFRB chairperson Teofilo Guadiz III in a brief interview.

(The provisional increase will be effective on October 8 at 1 a.m. Provisional means this is just a temporary measure for PUJ drivers while fuel prices have yet to stabilize.)

The current minimum fare for PUJs is P12.

Last month, the LTFRB said it is considering approving the fare hike before the end of the year after transportation groups Pasang Masda, Alliance of Concerned Transport Organization, and Alliance of Transport Operators and Drivers' Association of the Philippines filed petitions seeking a P5 increase in the minimum fare of PUJs amid the rising prices of fuel products.

The three organizations likewise asked for a P1 hike for every additional kilometer after the initial four kilometers.

Guadiz said they will conduct another hearing next week for the petition seeking the P5 increase in the minimum fare for PUJs.

Fare increase proof of gov’t inaction to rising fuel prices

Meanwhile, Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (BAYAN) Secretary General Renato Reyes said the fare hike is caused by the government’s “inaction” against the continuous spike of fuel prices.

“Kahit kaunting bawas sa buwis, hindi nila magawa. Ayaw nila mabawasan ang pagkukunan ng confidential and intelligence funds. Ang pantawid pasada ay malinaw na hindi sapat kaya kailangan nang magtaas ng pasahe ng mga tsuper,” Reyes said.

(They don’t want to lessen the fuel tax because they don’t want the source of their confidential and intelligence fund to be affected. It is clear that the fuel subsidy is not enough so they approved the provisional fare hike.)

“Dapat kalampagin ang gobyerno kaugnay ng napakalaking buwis sa langis, na bawasan man lang ito upang bumaba ang presyo ng langis at maibaba ang pamasahe sa jeep,” he said.

(We should call out the government and demand decreasing the massive fuel tax to ease the prices of fuel and jeepney fare.) — Sundy Locus/KBK/RSJ, GMA Integrated News