Want fare hike? Improve your services first – LTFRB reminds jeepney drivers

Rambo Talabong
'The riding public expects a better service from the increase of the fare,' says LTFRB chairman Martin Delgra III

FARE INCREASE. The transport groups said drivers need the increase to keep up with rising fuel prices. AFP Photo

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) –The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) deferred raising the minimum jeepney fare from P8 to P10 on Wednesday, October 11.

The decision came after transportation groups failed to provide additional evidence as to why the regulatory board should raise their fare. (READ: Jeepney groups ask LTFRB for fare increase from P8 to P10)

The hearing ended early with the LTFRB reminding leaders of transportation groups to first promise that they will improve their services before they grant the hike.

“I just want to bring this out early, perhaps to prepare the evidence. When you say you are actually asking for increase you’re asking to cover cost of your operation… However, the riding public expects a better service from the increase of the fare,” LTFRB chairman Martin Delgra III said.

Among the concerns they raised in the hearing were drivers cleaning their jeepneys and strictly following traffic rules. (READ: Is this THE solution? A Driver’s Academy for public transport drivers)

Asked for clarification, LTFRB board member Aileen Lizada downplayed Delgra’s statement, saying that the orderliness of jeepney drivers is “just an aside” in their decision. She pointed out that these are requirements long-required from the drivers.

Lizada said the LTFRB asked for more evidence from the groups as to why they need the 2-peso increase.

Transport groups asked for the hike last September 19, citing rising fuel prices for their request.

But Lizada said that they are looking for “computations” from the drivers showing that fuel prices have indeed adversely affected the income of their drivers and ultimately their quality of life.

Should it be approved, the increase will take effect in the National Capital Region (NCR), Central Luzon (Region 3), Calabarzon (Region 4a), and Mimaropa (Region 4b)

The following groups asked for the fare hike:

  • Federation of Jeepney Operators and Drivers Association of the Philippines (FEJODAP)
  • League of Transport Operators of the Philippines (LTAP)
  • Alliance of Concerned Transport Organizations (ACTO)
  • Alliance of Transport Operators & Drivers Association of the Philippines (ALTODAP)

Lizada earlier said that they did not want to rush deciding on the petition as jeepneys remain to be the most used mode of transportation by Filipinos. (READ: Yes, Pedro, we need to modernize the jeepney)

“We are talking about 3.2 million passengers who will be affected. The increase has [a] social impact,” Lizada had said.

The hearing will continue on October 24, where commuters groups are expected to attend. – Rappler.com

Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers the House of Representatives and local governments for Rappler. Prior to this, he covered security and crime. He was named Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs. In 2021, he was selected as a journalism fellow by the Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics.