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Sunday, June 17, 2018

DOTr, SETSCO to roll out modern PUVs


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In its relentless effort to provide quality, safe, environment friendly and affordable public transport, the Department of Transportation (DOTr), through the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB), gave green light to the Senate Employees Transport Service Cooperative (SETSCO) to roll out their new public utility jeepneys (PUJs), that are compliant under the PUV Modernization Program.

On Monday afternoon, 18 June 2018, 15 out of the total 35 modern PUJ units, which will ply the route of StarCity/CCP to PICC, GSIS/Senate to MOA to PITX and back, will initially be launched.

DOTr Undersecretary for Road Transport and Infrastructure Tim Orbos and LTRFB Chairman Martin Delgra III are expected to be joined by Senate President Vicente Sotto, Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri, Senators Aquilino Pimentel Jr. and Sherwin Gatchalian during the launch.

SETSCO is composed of 22 operators headed by its Chairperson Remedios Venturina, and is among the 3 pre-selected cooperatives to participate in the initial implementation of the PUVMP. 

The pre-selection was made by the Office of the Transport Cooperative (OTC), whose recommendation was based on the cooperative’s good standing, financial capability, and its established management structure.

SETSCO is by far the second cooperative to have been granted a franchise to operate due to its compliance to the PUVMP. It was able to obtain a loan from the Development Bank of the Philippines.

According to LTFRB Chairman Delgra, this goes to show that transport leaders are realizing the need for a better system.

"Kaya naman po talaga itong gawin. Nakasuporta po tayo sa mga kooperatiba basta't kumpleto ang mga dokumento, may maayos na ruta at kaisa natin sa pagsusulong ng PUVMP. Sila rin naman po ang makikinabang dito sa bandang huli,” said Chairman Delgra.

Aside from route rationalization, one of the key components of PUVMP is fleet modernization.

Usec. Orbos stressed the importance of safety and convenience with due consideration to Persons-with-Disabilities (PWDs) passengers. 

"Dapat po ang mga modernong public transport, hindi lang ligtas at kumportable. Ito ay dapat para sa lahat. Pag sinabing lahat, kasama po rito ang mga senior citizens o nakatatanda, gayundin ang mga PWDs,” Usec. Orbos said.

Meanwhile, despite opposition from some minority transport groups, Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade stands firm in his commitment to modernize the transport sector.

"We cannot delay nor deny the public of their right to convenient, affordable and roadworthy mass transport. Pinangako iyan ni Presidente Duterte kaya tungkulin ko na siguruhing iyong mga bulok na at hindi na dapat pang sakyan ay maialis na natin sa kalsada,” Secretary Tugade said.

Unfazed with threats of transport strikes, 
Tugade said "Magrally sila kung gusto nila. Sunugin nila effigy ko kung gusto nila. But I will insist on the PUV Modernization program. Hindi ko sinasagasaan mga driver at operator sa paghahanapbuhay nila. Ang pakiusap ko lang sa paghahanapbuhay nila, 'wag ka namang bumawi ng buhay ng iba."

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