PRESIDENT Benigno Aquino 3rd is not itching to raise train fares because his priority is improving services at the Light Rail Transit 1, LRT 2 and Metro Rail Transit 3 (MRT 3) systems, Malacañang said on Tuesday.
In a news briefing, Presidential Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. on
Tuesday clarified that raising MRT 3 fares was not discussed when Aquino met with officials of the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) on Monday.
“We will await further recommendations, if any from the DOTC regarding this matter.
What I am talking about is the priority given by the President to the Cabinet to give concrete solutions [to problems]to improve the services of MRT 3, which [problems]are being faced by tens of thousands of Filipino commuters. That is the priority right now,” he said.
Last week, DOTC spokesperson Migs Sagcal said fare adjustments would likely be implemented before Christmas for the three railway systems in Metro Manila.
If the plan pushes through, a ride on LRT 1 from Baclaran to Roosevelt will cost P29, while a one-way trip on LRT 2 from Santolan to Recto will cost P24, reports said.
Meanwhile, a trip on MRT 3, between North Avenue and Taft Avenue, will cost P28. At present, each full-stretch ride on the system ranges from P10 to P15 and on LRT 1 and LRT 2 from P12 to P15 and P20, respectively.
Aquino had admitted favoring a fare hike to reduce huge government subsidies in all three rail systems. The government will reduce its subsidy for the train systems to P10 billion from the P12 billion, if the increases were implemented.
But Coloma said no fare adjustment is imminent since the issue was not even briefly discussed during last Monday’s meeting.