The Department of Transportation (DOTr) clarified on Wednesday that the implementation of the PUV modernization program scheduled to begin in March 2019 is “a timeline, not a deadline.”
DOTr Assistant Secretary for Road Transport Mark De Leon issued this statement in reaction to reports that transport officials postponed the implementation PUV modernization program (PUVMP).
“The March 2019 is a timeline, not a deadline, bearing in mind that the transition period is until June 2020 — three years after the launching of the PUVMP and the signing of the Omnibus Franchising Guidelines (OFG),” De Leon said in a statement.
De Leon echoed Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTRFB) chairman Martin Delgra’s pronouncement that no franchise will be revoked if operators and drivers fail to comply with LTFRB memorandum circulars in March 2019.
“Units are really not going to be replaced and franchises are not going to be cancelled. Ang pinag-uusapan lang po natin dito ay consolidation ng units na kasalukuyan na po nating ginagawa (What we are discussing here is the consolidation of units),” he added.
He was referring to Memorandum Circular 2018-006 or the Guidelines for the Public Utility Vehicle Modernization Program’s Initial Implementation, and the MC 2018-008 or the Consolidation of Franchise Holders in Compliance with the Omnibus Franchising Guidelines.
The LTFRB’s memorandum circulars stated that routes and franchises will be given to other cooperatives if drivers and operators fail to comply with the rules.
The memorandum circulars require franchise holders to form a cooperative and must have fleet management in place.
Franchise holders will also be required to replace their fleet with Euro-4 utility, solar, or electric vehicles within a year after the circulars are issued in March. /ee – By: Daphne Galvez
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