Poe: Drivers can go to court if jeepney phaseout pushes through
If the plan to phaseout the jeepney pushes through, Senator Grace Poe said drivers and operators can go to court armed with Senate resolutions to contest the move.
Speaking to reporters after a summit of transport groups in Manila, Poe said the Senate can introduce bills to streamline the process of jeepney modernization but it will take a long time.
Poe then answered questions whether the plan of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) to phase out jeepneys can be stopped.
“Puwedeng pumunta sa korte ang iba gamit ang resolusyon ng Senado na nagsasabi na ito ay hindi maayos na ginagawa, so may mga recourse naman (They can go to court armed with Senate resolutions so there is still recourse),” she said in an ambush interview.
Poe, chair of the Senate committee on public services, earlier addressed the different transport groups from the No to Jeepney Phaseout Coalition during the Transport Unity Summit.
While the lawmaker clarified on multiple occasions that she is not advocating for the removal of jeepneys on the roads, she stressed that she does not fully agree with the proposals for the phaseout.
“Hindi ako against modernization, lahat tayo gusto natin ng modernization pero dapat ayusin nila ang proseso para hindi naman mahirapan ang mga drivers. Alam mo 600,000 drivers ang apektado dito (I am not against modernization, we all want it but they should fix the process so that the drivers would not be burdened. You know, 600,000 drivers are affected here),” she explained.
“Kapag nagkansela sila ng mga ruta, anong kapalit no’n? At papaano naman sila makakabili ng jeep na P1.2 million hanggang P1.8 million kung ang ibibigay mo lang ay P80,000 na pang-downpayment (If they cancel the routes, what is the replacement? And how can they buy a jeep worth P1.2 million to P1.8 million if you would just give them P80,000 for downpayment)?” she asked.
President Rodrigo Duterte previously warned owners of old jeepneys that their vehicles will be towed because it puts the lives of commuters at risk. Leaders of transport groups, however, claim that the modernization program is anti-poor. /ee
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