Half of 1.2 million tricycle drivers nationwide to get fuel subsidy

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MANILA, PHILIPPINES - MARCH 07: A man loads a tricycle with gasoline from a used liquor bottle sold on the side of a road, a day before a huge price increase on petroleum products is implemented, on March 07, 2022 in Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines. (Photo by Ezra Acayan/Getty Images)
MANILA, PHILIPPINES - MARCH 07: A man loads a tricycle with gasoline from a used liquor bottle sold on the side of a road, a day before a huge price increase on petroleum products is implemented, on March 07, 2022 in Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines. (Photo by Ezra Acayan/Getty Images)

The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año said on Tuesday (June 28) that only half of the 1.2 million tricycle drivers nationwide will receive a P6,500 fuel cash subsidy from the government.

Under the “Pantawid Pasada Program for Tricycle Drivers” designed to help tricycle drivers get on with the rising cost of fuel and gas amid the pandemic, a total of 617,806 qualified for the subsidy, with Region IV-A or Calabarzon accounting for 26% of the total beneficiaries, followed by Central Luzon at 13%, and 11% from the National Capital Region.

A total of 1.2 million tricycle drivers were initially eyed to receive the subsidy program from the government, but only 766,590 tricycle drivers were included in the list provided by the local government units (LGUs) in the masterlist, and 148,784 were disqualified due to a lack of means of verification such as driver’s license numbers, incomplete e-wallet information, and late submission of names, according to Año.

“We had a validation and verification to ensure that only legitimate tricycle drivers with valid franchises and licenses, and not colorum, would receive the fuel subsidy from the government,” Año explained.

However, Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) Executive Director Maria Kristina Cassion said that the release of the cash subsidy would be delayed due to some beneficiaries being “rejected” by the Land Bank of the Philippines’ system, and they’re awaiting DILG’s resubmission of the list.

The schedule of release, originally scheduled before 17, will now be in the first week of July, according to Cassion.

The fuel subsidy will be distributed in three batches: 539,395 drivers with an e-wallet account would come first, the second batch is for the 73,233 drivers who will use the Landbank over-the-counter system in a branch near them, and the last, for 5,178 drivers who will get their subsidy at their respective LGUs.

Marvin Joseph Ang is a news and creative writer who follows developments in politics, democracy, and popular culture. He advocates for a free press and national democracy. The views expressed are his own.

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