Transport body gets tough on bus firms resisting inventory
TEN PASSENGER bus companies may face sanctions for refusing to subject their buses to a government inventory aimed at determining which of their units are operating in Metro Manila without a franchise.
In a statement, the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) said Tuesday that the 10 companies which were operating a total of 2,732 buses had been asked to explain their refusal to cooperate with the government.
The firms account for about 20 percent of passenger buses operating in Metro Manila, including those with connecting routes to the provinces.
Transportation Secretary Jose de Jesus said that the inventory of buses, done in October last year, was “necessary to identify passenger buses operating illegally.”
The companies that refused to subject themselves to the government audit were A&B Liner, Fermina Express, Admiral Transport, Hi Star, Mayamy Transport, California Bus Line, Genesis Transport, Bus Operator Transport Service Coop and individual bus operators Roberto A. Barreto and Josephine Lopez.
The government has blamed colorum buses for the heavy traffic on Metro Manila’s major thoroughfares. Illegal buses also compete with legitimate units for passengers, reducing the revenue of legal bus operators.
Under the audit, government personnel will inspect the units of bus companies to determine if these are properly registered.
LTFRB Chair Nelson Laluces said that based on the agency’s records, a total of 12,689 passenger buses operate within the metropolis. Of the figure, 3,732 units ply Edsa; 1,589 have other routes; 4,300 are provincial buses which can travel on Edsa to get to their terminals while the rest are provincial buses which are not allowed on Edsa.
He said that around 80 percent or 9,957 out of the total number of buses had already been included in the LTFRB inventory.
As for the 10 companies, Laluces said that the board had summoned their operators to explain their refusal to subject their buses to checks.
According to the LTFRB chief, noncompliance with the inventory may lead to the cancellation of the franchise issued to the bus company.
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