A commuters’ group is asking for a P7 minimum jeepney fare even as the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) is set to release this month its decision on the issue of fare cuts for buses, taxis, and UV express nationwide.
Elvie Medina, president of the National Council for Commuter Protection (NCCP), said the group is set to file this week a petition for a 50-centavo rollback in jeepney fare.
The NCCP’s move was in response to the “big-time” rollback in prices of petroleum products implemented by oil companies for three consecutive weeks.
Oil firms slashed the prices of oil products on Monday by P1.25 per liter for gasoline; P1.45 per liter for diesel; and P1.25 per liter for kerosene.
Since January 5, oil firms have cut diesel prices by P3.75 per liter, prompting the NCCP to ask for a lower jeepney fare.
Winston Ginez, LTFRB chairman, said the agency will have to conduct hearings nationwide before it decides whether or not to reduce fares for buses, taxis and UV express vans.
Earlier, the Department of Transportation and Communications said that bus and taxi fares may soon be lowered.
Last year, the LTFRB granted petitions for a reduction of P1 on the minimum fare for jeepney due to the continued downtrend in oil prices.
Currently, the minimum fare for PUJs is P7.50. However, many PUJ drivers still collect P8 from passengers because of the alleged “shortage of 25-centavo coins.”
The Pinagkaisang Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Opereytor Nationwide, meanwhile, rejected any move to further lower jeepney fares.
“With regard to further fare rollback to P7, Piston is not amenable to it at the moment,” said Piston National President George San Mateo.
Instead of targeting ordinary jeepney operators and drivers, San Mateo said the government should push for lower prices of prime commodities, spare parts and basic services.
He said the recent series of oil price cuts should be a sign for the government to lower power and water rates, as well as airfare and train fare.
“We welcome the oil price rollback. And we are demanding that prices of prime commodities and basic services like power rates, water rates, airline and shipping passenger fares and cargo charges as well as passenger fares of MRT, LRT and PNR should go down significantly,” he said.