Pampanga quarry truckers protest trucking ordinance

Posted at 01/05/09 7:49 PM

More than a hundred truckers conducted a noise barrage outside the Pampanga capitol Monday to protest an ordinance that seeks to stop overloading among commercial quarry trucks in the province.

An ABS-CBN Pampanga News Bureau report said members of the Federation of Pampanga Truckers Inc. (FPTI) drove their trucks outside the Pampanga capitol and conducted a noise barrage outside the building to protest Ordinance 261. The report said the noise barrage was conducted while Pampanga Gov. Ed Panlilio was meeting with local reporters.

FPTI interim president Dong Laxamana said the protest was not meant to cause disturbance at the provincial capitol but to urge Panlilio to stop the implementation of the ordinance. Ordinance 261 seeks to prevent commercial quarry trucks from overloading sand by instituting measures like reducing truck height, removal of truck axle, among others.

Panlilio, meanwhile, called the local police provincial office to ask why the truckers were allowed to conduct a protest outside the provincial capitol without a permit. He said the protesting truckers could face criminal charges for creating a public disturbance.

In an interview, the Pampanga governor said the ordinance was passed based on the recommendation of the technical working group and the accreditation committee that accredits truckers and operators who can haul and operate in quarry areas in the province.

"At least 1,500 trucks have already applied for accreditation. A lot of the trucks are already reducing truck height," he told ABS-CBN News.

He also said a power struggle between Laxamana and former FPTI president Mike Tapang led to the protest.