MMDA suspends number coding due to transport protests on January 24
MANILA, Philippines — The Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) suspended the number coding scheme for all vehicles this coming Wednesday, January 24, except in Makati and Las Piñas.
In an advisory released Tuesday night, January 23, the MMDA said the Unified Vehicular Volume Reduction Program (UVVRP) will be suspended due to the protests that will be staged by transport groups Pinagkaisang Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Operator Nationwide (Piston) and No To Jeepney Phaseout Coalition on Wednesday.
Piston leader George San Mateo said they will stage a nationwide protest against the government’s “Operation Tanggal Bulok, Tanggal Usok” which effectively removed dilapidated jeepneys from the road.
The transport groups will be marching from the National Housing Authority to the Land Transportation Office and the Land Transportation and Franchising Regulatory Board (LTFRB) in Quezon City while staging protests in other regional offices of the Department of Transportation.
San Mateo said that the crackdown is “unfair” to the drivers as the government takes away their livelihood.
Piston and NTJPC will also be protesting against the implementation of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (Train) law which puts excise taxes on fuel.
Under the tax reform law, diesel, which is not taxed at present, will be imposed P2.50 per liter tax in 2018, P4.50 in 2019, and P6 in 2020.
San Mateo reiterated their earlier call for a P6 per liter discount to jeepney drivers.
“Ang sa amin lang, sana magbigay naman ng discount to jeepney drivers kahit hanggang 30 liters lang para hindi na ipapasa sa mananakay ‘yung pagtaas ng pasahe. Kasi sila rin naman ang mahihirapan niyan,” he told Rappler.
(For us, we hope that they give a discount to jeepney drivers even up to 30 litera so that the fare hike will no longer be shouldered by the commuters. Because they will be the ones who’ll get burdened (by the excise taxes).)
San Mateo added that they will not stage a transport strike on Wednesday to avoid inconveniencing the riding public.
On Tuesday, the LTFRB said they will be deploying 38 government vehicles that will provide free rides and 20 buses with minimal fare in areas that will be affected by the protests.— Rappler.com