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The Committee on Transportation of the Sangguniang Panlungsod will hold a public hearing and consultation with associations of multicab and jeepney drivers and operators on Thursday to discuss the proposed Public Utility Vehicles Modernization Program (PUVMP) of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB).

Councilor Nesario G. Awat, who chairs the transport committee, said after meeting with LTFRB last week that there are matters that need to be ironed out regarding the proposed PUVMP, which will greatly affect the transport sector in the city. He cited, in particular, the proposed route plan and trunk lines for PUVs.

The issue of PUVMP was first raised by multicab and jeepney operators in a meeting held earlier this month, where they also sought assistance from the government. Under the program, PUVs 15 years and older must be phased out and replaced with philcabs.

During the meeting, they came up with requests which included the revision of the proposed route plan, which they said is disadvantageous not only to them but to tricycle drivers, who might lose income because their route will be affected.

“Kailangan ihanda rin natin ang mga operators napag alaman natin na sa ngayon may pitong cooperatives pero ang trunk line ay apat lang at ang policy ng LTFRB, isang trunk line isang kooperatiba so in short kailangan magkaroon ng merger yung mga ibang kooperatiba para maaddress ang mga bagay na ito,” Awat told media in an interview.

“Kaya nga ang ginawa natin para magkaroon ng leveling of at magkaisa ang lahat at concensus ang judgement. Magkakaroon tayo ng public dialogue kasama na rito ang consultation, public hearing na may kaugnayan sa mga bagay na ito na naka schedule this Thursday 1 pm,” he added.

Awat also said the proposed route plan, which was submitted by the City Planning and Development Office to LTFRB, needs to be reconsidered. Therefore, he filed a resolution for the postponement of its implementation.

“Ngayon ay meron na ngang dapat gawin ang city planning para mai-consider. Naging maliwanag din kung ano yung magiging flow ng aaprubahan na route plan at dadaan pa rin naman ito sa sanggunian,” he said, adding that LTFRB is also amenable to changing the proposal.

“Ang sabi nila, kung ito ay aamyendahan ay wala namang problema. That is within the power of the sanggunian but that amendment should be a subject to approval of the LTFRB and DoTr,” he said.