IMBOA: LTFRB's bus reduction scheme, economic sabotage

Posted at 07/15/09 9:12 AM

The Land Transportation, Franchising and Regulatory Board's (LTFRB) plan to reduce the number of buses plying EDSA by 80 percent is economic sabotage, a bus operator said Wednesday.

"Parang economic sabotage kasi ilang daang milyon ang mawawala na income ng mga driver at mga operators," Claire dela Fuente, president of the Integrated Metropolitan Bus Operators Association (IMBOA), told ABS-CBN's Umagang Kay Ganda (UKG).

LTFRB Chairman Alberto Suansing said the board has stopped accepting franchise applications and it is also planning to turn down applications for franchise renewal. He said at least 4,000 buses will be plucked out of EDSA under the new scheme.

"Based on our study, there should be not more than 1,000 buses on EDSA," Suansing told UKG.

He said it will take five years to slim down the number because majority of the passenger buses have newly approved franchises. "A bus' franchise is good for five years," he explained.

Dela Fuente, meanwhile, said at least 16,000 bus drivers and ticket collectors will be affected by the LTFRB's scheme.

"Kabuhayan ang pinag-uusapan natin dito. Not only for the drivers, ticket collectors and mechanics...," she said.

The IMBOA president said she doubts the LTFRB will be able to maintain the new scheme for five years. She said the scheme's implementation may be stopped once Suansing leaves his post.