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Pro-money, not pro-people

05:03 AM August 23, 2017

Mr. President, please clean up the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) for us.

There is something sinister going on at LTFRB. There should be an immediate lifestyle check of its officials to ascertain whether or not some recent ridiculous decisions are being influenced by vested interests.

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Who is behind the move to strangle Uber? Is it taxi operators? Are there powerful politicians behind them or are they themselves taxi operators using a corporate front? Suspending Uber’s franchise and telling its partner drivers to temporarily operate under the Grab flag is a ridiculous but ingenious way to destroy Uber. It is also possible that LTFRB is making decisions to simply augment fees they can earn. Suspending franchises forces people to approach them on bended knees. It then becomes easy to strike a deal.

They have legal excuses for this decision, but it will not work in the long run. Some people are maneuvering behind the curtain. If anyone knows, please expose in social media, for the sake of the riding public. LTFRB makes new regulatory policies based, not on the interests of the riding public they are mandated to serve, but on their capacity to earn from the interests of powerful politicians and businessmen. LTFRB is sadly pro-money, not pro-people.

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It is okay if LTFRB sides with rogue taxi drivers, who do not use meters in favor of negotiations for a higher price, with their aging vehicles. But please do not suppress the new emerging mass transport system with honest drivers in new sleek vehicles. ’Wag naman. Work for the interest of the riding public, please. Let us not wallow in an old mass transport system that bleeds commuters. Let’s move on.

In truth, the jurisdiction of LTFRB over “non-taxis” like Uber and Grab is in a gray area that can be questioned at the Supreme Court. Perhaps we need a new agency which is IT-skilled, and which LTFRB is not.

President Duterte, the riding public needs your help. Please replace the senior officials of LTFRB and reverse their bad decisions. The one offering better services should win. Mr. President, please clean up LTFRB for us, noted as one of the most corrupt government agencies.

BERNIE V. LOPEZ, [email protected]

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TAGS: Bernie v. lopez, grab, Inquirer letters, LTFRB, Public transportation, Rodrigo Duterte, TNCs, transportation network companies, Uber
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