Two local transportation companies in Puerto Princesa City may lose their mayor’s permits if they continue to operate outside their legal boundaries, according to the Business Processing and Licensing Office (BPLO).
The office gave Backride Palawan and Byahe an ultimatum to only offer services stated in their respective legal documents. A letter has also been prepared for the City Legal Office recommending the companies’ revocation of their mayor’s permits and penalties by law enforcement authorities should they continue to violate their allowed services.
The BPLO on Monday met with representatives of Backride and Byahe to remind them of their limitations as transport companies, mainly because of reports that they were offering services without the proper legal documents to do so.
“Alam naman nila ang kanilang in-applyan. Any gross violation doon sa kanilang mayor’s permit can be a ground for the cancellation or revocation of their mayor’s permit,” said BPLO chief Tess Rodriguez in an interview Wednesday.
“Alam naman na pandemiya ngayon. Kung grabe talaga ang city government, dapat ikinancel na sila. Pero binigyan natin sila ng isa pang chance, huling chance para sila ay sumunod. We would like to give them one last chance to follow the law,” she explained.
Rodriguez added that Backride Palawan, which mainly operates as a motorcycle taxi provider, only has a permit to transport goods and deliveries. The company also recently applied for a permit to offer car rental services at the BPLO, which is pending approval.
Meanwhile, Byahe only has permits for online car booking services, but only for utility vehicles with franchises and are registered under Byahe’s membership, and motorcycle delivery of goods.
All their permits may be terminated if they continue to offer services that they do not have permits for. Backride Palawan needs to secure a franchise under the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) to offer ride-sharing services. The same applies to Byahe, which has also started offering ride-sharing services.
Rodriguez also reminded the public that transacting with the two companies, especially Backride Palawan’s ride-sharing services, is at one’s own risk.
“We don’t want na maging at risk at ating mga kababayan lalo na’t higit pa ‘yong mga nagtatrabaho sa gabi na walang masakyan. ‘Yon yong wino-worry natin kasi anu’t-anuman na mangyari, hindi mapo-proteksyunan ng batas. Hindi ‘yan covered ng insurance. May insurance ang mga driver nila, pero it has nothing to do with their passengers,” she said.
In early February, the City Council ordered Backride Palawan to stop their ride-sharing services until they are able to secure proper permits from the BPLO and a franchise from LTFRB.
The company also received criticisms from city tricycle drivers due to the absence of proper papers to operate.