LTFRB faces new challenge with Arcade City
Just after dealing with Uber, the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) is facing off with another transport network company (TNC) that is challenging its authority.
On Wednesday, the LTFRB warned new TNC Arcade City to cease operations after it offered itself as an “alternative” to Uber.
LTFRB board member Aileen Lizada told reporters that Arcade City is “not authorized” by the agency to operate as a TNC as it “has not coordinated” with them.
“They have not yet been accredited by the LTFRB,” Lizada said of Arcade City, adding that all of its cars are “colorum,” or operating without a valid franchise.
In a subsequent statement, the LTFRB told the new TNC to “stop all bookings made” through its app. It warned that “legal actions” would be taken should it fail to do so, and its drivers would be apprehended for colorum operations.
In a Facebook post, Arcade City said that it is “recruiting and activating drivers same-day all across the Philippines to provide service in the gap left by Uber’s abrupt withdrawal.”
After its motion for reconsideration was denied by the LTFRB on Tuesday night, Uber went offline to serve its monthlong suspension following its violation of the board’s July 26 order not to accept and activate new drivers into its platform.
On its website, Arcade City trumpeted itself as an “Uber alternative.” It pointed out that Uber’s going offline does not affect the TNC itself, but the thousands of drivers who rely on the platform.
“When 66,000 drivers are put out of job overnight, the suffering is not felt by the corporations and bureaucrats who made the decision,” Arcade City founder and CEO Christopher David said in a statement.
“The suffering is felt by the stranded riders and the jobless drivers who may now have difficulty providing for their families. That is wrong—and Arcade City will do whatever we can to fix it,” he added.
Under the LTFRB’s Memorandum Circular No. 2015-015, which set forth the guidelines for the accreditation of TNCs, internet-based transportation services fall under the board’s jurisdiction.