Piston urges CH not to require TPUJ drivers to settle fines first

·2 min read

THE Pinagkaisang Samahan ng Tsuper at Operator’s Nationwide (Piston) Cebu chapter has appealed for a moratorium on traditional public utility jeepney (TPUJs) drivers’ unsettled accounts and penalties.

Piston Cebu chapter chairman Greg Perez told SunStar Cebu that most of their members have unpaid fines.

He said they won’t be able to resume operation if the Mandaue City Planning and Development Office adopts the recommendation of City Attorney Nenita Layese requiring them to pay up first.

Perez said only a few TPUJ drivers can only comply with the requirement since most of them have been out of a job for the last eight months.

He said he submitted a letter to the mayor’s office that contained the group’s plans.

He said he hopes the City will allow TPUJ drivers to pay their penalties in installments.

Perez said the local government unit (LGU) must also consider that TPUJ drivers still have to buy materials for the barriers inside their units.

He said it would be best if the group met with the LGU to come up with a “win-win solution” for both sides.

City Treasurer Regal Oliva, for her part, said a moratorium won’t affect the City’s collection since it only applies to requiring the drivers to settle their accounts first before they can return on the road.

She said the penalties are considered additional revenues and the TPUJ drivers still have to pay them.

Oliva also said an ordinance is required before the City can impose a moratorium.

Oliva said she is waiting for the Traffic Enforcement Agency of Mandaue (Team) to provide her with the exact amount of the unpaid drivers’ penalties.

Last year, she said, Team collected around P20 million from traffic violation fines.

However, Oliva said the figures will be smaller this year because there have been fewer vehicles on the road because of quarantine restrictions the City imposed to contain the coronavirus pandemic.

Oliva said fines they collect from traffic violations will be added to the trust fund used for the salaries, expenses of facilities of Team. (KFD)