A lawmaker urged the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board or LTFRB to come up with a list of offenses that clearly distinguishes the penalties imposed on taxi operators and drivers in the proposed “Bill of Rights of Taxi Passengers” in the House of Representatives.
Valenzuela City Congressman Win Gatchalian told the LTFRB to punish taxi operators and drivers according to their respective offenses to uphold accountability and discipline among these transport groups.
“We should determine exactly what penalty goes to the driver and which goes to the operator,” Gatchalian said.
“Kasi may mga batas tayo sa ngayon na kahit dyarber naman talaga ang may sala, ang napapagalitan ay ang mga operator natin. Meron din naman na baliktad ang sitwasyon,” he added.
Gatchalian is the primary author of House Bill No. 3681 or the ‘Bill of Rights of Taxi Passengers’, which the technical working group or TWG created under the House Committee on Transportation is currently being merged with five other measures on taxi passengers’ rights.
In the first sub-committee hearing, Gatchalian cited taxi drivers’ refusal to render service as one of the offenses that has an unfair penalty since it punishes taxi operators under the current LTFRB’s Joint Administrative Order or JAO series 2014-01.
“Unfair at hindi naman siguro tama na patawan natin ng parusa ang operator kapag ang mga drayber nila ay hindi nagsakay ng pasahero dahil drayber naman talaga ang namili na hindi magsakay,” he said.
The lawmaker also urged LTFRB to hasten the creation of the nationwide database of all taxi drivers to help taxi passengers determine whether the taxi they are about to ride is legitimate and government registered.
Last year, LTFRB Chairman Winston Ginez issued Memorandum Circular 2014-20 that mandates taxi drivers to direct taxi operators in Metro Manila to submit a list of their authorized drivers so that it can create a centralized database.
Ginez also said that LTFRB is coordinating with developers for a mobile application to allow passengers to check whether a taxi driver is in the database or not. (Timothy Alcantara)