Gov’t ready for Monday’s strike


The government is prepared to deploy private and public buses to help commuters who will be affected by a transport group’s planned strike on Monday, March 19.

“We have activated the Joint Quick Response Team (JQRT) for Transportation. Twenty private buses will be fielded together with government vehicles in six staging areas,” Lawyer Aileen Lizada, Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) member, said.

Transport group Pinagkaisang Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Opereytor Nationwide (Piston) announced recently their plan to stage a transport strike on Monday in an effort to stress their opposition of the administration’s jeepney modernization program.

Piston head George San Mateo said in a statement the modernization program is “hollow” and will not benefit jeepney drivers.

San Mateo added the Department of Transportation (DoT) and the LTFRB “deceived” jeepney operators and drivers saying the modernization program will not involve the phasing out of old jeepney units.

Piston held two protest rallies in January and February to protest the government’s crackdown of old and rickety jeeps through “Tanggal Bulok, Tanggal Usok” program.

Aside from the strike on Monday, Piston will also hold mass protests in various staging areas in Metro Manila.
With the expected transport strike, Government will be offering “Libreng Sakay” while also commissioning private buses to help commuters charging a minimum fare of P10 for non-air-conditioned bus units, and P12 for air-conditioned bus units. At least 40 policemen will be assigned as “Marshall” in each bus.

Despite Piston’s sustained protestation, LTFRB chairman Martin Delgra III said the modernization program is still on as “the safety of the riding public should not be compromised.”

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Written by Tempo Online

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