MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Transportation (DOTr) clarified that it is not holding off the implementation of the Public Utility Vehicle Modernization Program (PUVMP).
In a statement released Wednesday (November 20), the agency rectified earlier reports that it has plans to defer the said program following the Senate deliberation on the Department’s P147-billion proposed budget for 2020.
“Walang sinabi ang DOTr na hindi nito itutuloy ang pagpapatupad ng PUV Modernization Program, (The DOTr did not say that it is dropping the implementation of the PUV Modernization Program),” the DOTr said in a statement.
The agency explained that what transpired during the Senate deliberation was a condition in case operators of old PUV units fail to modermize their units come July 2020.
“Ang nabanggit ay kung sakali mang mabigo ang mga operator ng mga lumang jeepney na mag-modernize ng kanilang mga unit pagsapit ng Hulyo 2020, pansamantala ay pahihintulutan muna sila ng DOTr na makapamasada sa kondisyong papasa ang kanilang mga lumang unit sa roadworthiness test sa ilalim ng technology-based Motor Vehicle Inspection System (MVIS), na walang human intervention,” the DOTr clarified.
(What was said was, in case operators of old jeepney units fail to modernize their units until July 2020, the DOTr will allow them to operate temporarily with their old units provided that their old units pass the road-worthiness test under the technology-based Motor Vehicle Inspection System (MVIS), without any human intervention.)
If they pass the MVIS, the Department said, “the Land Transportation Franchising & Regulatory Board (LTFRB) will grant them Provisional Authority (PA) valid for one year only, as they need to undergo road worthiness check via MVIS every year as well.”
To secure a PA, PUV operators need to submit a petition for consolidation on or before June 30, 2020 including a petition expressing their intention to join the PUVMP.
If they fail to submit on deadline, the “prior operator rule” will lapse and their franchise will be given to cooperatives who are PUVMP compliant.
“Oras na may PUVMP-compliant na kooperatiba o korporasyon na ang mabigyan ng prangkisa sa rutang tinatakbuhan ng lumang jeepney, automatic na makakansela na ang PA na ibinigay ditto,” the DOTr stressed.
(Once the franchise line is given to PUVMP-compliant cooperative or corporation, the PA granted to old units will be automatically cancelled.)
The DOTr remains firm that the PUVMP, a directive by President Rodrigo Duterte himself, is necessary to ensure the safety of commuters as the modernized jeepney units are equipped with safety features and designs in protection and convenience not just of the commuters but of the drivers as well.
Likewise, the program aims to curb pollution and to improve the income and livelihood of operators and drivers in the country.
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