The city government has activated hotline numbers in response to concerns regarding the distance of the new public transport terminal in Brgy. Irawan that has allegedly resulted in tricycle and van drivers overcharging passengers.
Richard Ligad, chief of the City Information Office (CIO), said tricycles from Brgy. Irawan to the city center cost P50 per person. The price will only change if the tricycle is rented by a single passenger.
He advised the public to take photos of the license plates of tricycle and van drivers who are overcharging in addition to reporting them to the appropriate authorities.
“Piktyuran nila. Pwede nila ipadala kahit sa akin,” Ligad told Palawan News on Monday.
Concerns about tricycle drivers should be reported to the City Traffic Management Office (CTMO), and van drivers should be reported to the land transport terminal management.
“Yung van kasi, pwede nila ireklamo, ipadala nila doon sa terminal. Yun kasi ang nakakasakop dun,” Ligad said.
The CTMO may be reached through their hotline numbers 09069578719 and 09812173459.
The CTMO, he said, will be in charge of monitoring the hotline from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
After office hours, the hotline number will be personally manned by CTMO chief Allan Mabella.
Ligad reminded commuters to only use authorized tricycles with franchises to ensure that they are charged the correct fare.
“Kaya wag silang sasakay dun sa hindi sakop ng terminal,” he reminds the public.
The city’s tricycle operators and drivers associations (TODAs), led by federation chairman Efnie Lusoc, are scheduled to meet to discuss the matter, he added.
The TODA in Irawan, he added, had already been advised not to overcharge commuters. “Wag silang mag-o-overcharging, sila yong priority na nandoon sila sa loob ng terminal, so dapat may pila. Sa kanila sasakay para may taripa.”
“P50 kada tao, yong ang pinaka mataas kung hanggang sa bayan ka na, maliban na lang kung arkilado mo yong tricycle kung may pangarga ka, yon mag-iiba ang presyo. Pero kung wala, P50 ang pamasahe hanggang bayan. Yong fare matrix pa rin ang susundin, so kung sa kanila ka sumakay, siguradong hindi ka nila io-overcharge ” he added.
Since the opening of the new transport terminal last January 6, the city government has received flak from the affected passengers and netizens.
A woman named Aling Baby told Palawan News about her encounters with unfair van drivers.
According to her, they chose to wait for the van transport to Brgy. Bahile at the Sta. Lourdes Junction to allegedly reduce their fare, but the van driver refused to give them a discount.
Aside from the van driver, Aling Baby and her companions have also fallen prey to a tricycle driver who overcharged them.
“Grabe kahirap yong byahe namin pa Bahile kahapon! Mag aabang ka dun sa may banga, tapos ang pamasahe hanggang Salvacion, 150 pesos dating 70 or 80 lang sa van! Eh sa totoo mas napalapit nga kami sa Bahile/Salvacion, pero kinakatwiran ng van driver dahil daw yun sa paglipat nila sa Irawan. So kahit sa may banga na kami sumakay, damay kami sa mataas na pamasahe,” she complained.
“Tapos pauwi via bus, kagulo mga trike driver. Walang cab. Napilitan na kaming mag trike sa tumataginting na 250 pesos hanggang Valencia! Diyos ko! Hilong-hilo ako sa layo, parang nag jet lag! Haayy! Ang hirap maging commuter na mahirap dito sa Puerto!” she said further.
Another commuter also complained that she was charged P300 by a tricycle driver from Citi Hardware to Brgy. Irawan.