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Bam Aquino: Modern jeeps should be safe but affordable

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Senator Bam Aquino wants safer and more efficient jeepneys for commuters and the environment.

He filed Senate Bill No. 2056 to achieve that goal which also aims to protect the livelihood of drivers and their families.

Under SBN 2056 drivers who wish to shift careers will also be given sufficient compensation.

“Nais natin umunlad at umasenso ang mga sistema ng jeepney at tricycle, bus at tren sa bansa–at naniniwala akong may kakayahan tayong gawin ito,” he said.

“Ngunit kailangan din natin siguraduhin na sa programang ito, walang masasagasaang Pilipino,” Aquino said.

If passed into law, jeepneys will be tested based on road-worthiness and financial assistance will be given to owners who need to upgrade their jeepneys.

He noted that the Department of Transportation (DoTr) and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) both committed that there will be no phase-out of public utility jeepneys (PUJs) come March 2019.

“Lahat, pati komyuter, talo sa planong phase-out sa Marso. Kung mawala ang ating mga jeepney, wala ring masasakyan ang ating mga kababayan,” he said.

“Tulungan natin ang mga driver na mag-modernize, imbis na tanggalin lang ang kanilang trabaho’t kabuhayan ng kanilang pamilya,” he said.

Aquino added, “Plano niyo sanang bawiin ang ang prangkisa ng mga jeep sa Marso, ngunit hindi man lang kinunsulta o tinanong ang transport sector.”

“Gawin natin ito ng tama, huwag muna ituloy itong phase-out,” he said referring to the Memorandum Circular released by DoTr and LTFRB.

During the hearing of the Committee on Public Services on the issue of jeepney modernization, LTFRB head Martin Delgra and DoTr Undersecretary Tim Orbos gave their commitment to Aquino that the phase-out in March will not push through.