DOTr: PUV drivers’ fuel vouchers to be given away before end of 2018
The revived Pantawid Pasada Program for public utility vehicle (PUV) drivers affected by higher oil prices due to the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law will be implemented before the end of the year despite some delays, Department of Transportation officials said yesterday.
Transportation Undersecretary Thomas Orbos blamed the absence of a complete data base on drivers for the delay in its implementation.
During the House ways and means committee hearing on the proposed second tax reform package, committee chair Dakila Carlo Cua asked for an update on the Pantawid Pasada Program, which was aimed at mitigating the impact of high petroleum prices by providing fuel vouchers to jeepney drivers.
Cua said that since the program would benefit those driving franchised jeepneys, it was supposed to encourage drivers of so-called “colorum” vehicles to turn legitimate.
But Orbos said the DOTr was having a hard time coming up with data on drivers, saying that they would still have to secure information from stakeholders.
As such, Orbos asked the committee to give them “enough” time to roll out the program.
Orbos later told the Inquirer that of the estimated 179,000 jeepneys in the country, 30 to 40 percent were colorum.
“It will not be fair to legitimate operators,” he said.
Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board Chair Martin Delgra III said there was likely about 500,000 PUVs and a similar number of drivers nationwide, but there was “no drivers’ database to show the exact number of drivers.”
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