Piston head charged over jeepney strike

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The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) filed a case against transport group leader George San Mateo on Friday afternoon before the Quezon City Metropolitan Trial Court over February’s transport strike.

San Mateo, president of the Pinagkaisahang Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Operator Nationwide (Piston), will lead another nationwide strike on Monday and Tuesday against the government’s fleet modernization plan.

The LTFRB filed a case against San Mateo for violation of the Public Service Act.

Part of its complaint reads: “(San Mateo) violated Section 20 and Section 24 of the Public Service Act which provides that the act of conducting a transport strike is an adoption or application of a measure which affects the public in relation to the public service which the transport sector was supposed to provide.”


The LTFRB added that Piston’s “Tigil Pasada” was done without its approval and authorization.
San Mateo stood firm about the strike set for next week.

“The strike will definitely push through,” he told The Manila Times in a telephone interview, adding that the group’s lawyers would act accordingly.

“(This) will not deter us against this harassment by the Duterte regime,” Whatever this legal case is, it has no bearing on the transport strike,” he said.

The LTFRB said there would be little chance of a cancellation of classes and government work because of the impending strike, as the last one had “minimum effect” on commuters.

In its rally on October 16 and 17, Piston was joined by other militant groups including members of Pasang Masda, Alliance of Concerned Transport Organizations (ACTO), Federation of Jeepney Operators and Drivers Associations of the Philippines (Fejodap), and Alliance of Transport Operators and Drivers Association of the Philippines (Altodap).

The groups claim to cover the following routes: Makati, Pasay-Pier, Novaliches-Malinta via General Luis, Malabon-Navotas-Monumento, and Sucat-Evacom routes in Metro Manila were paralyzed, as well as numerous routes in San Fernando, Guagua, Bacolor, Mexico, Arayat, Angeles City, Macabebe, Masantol and Minalin in Pampanga.

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