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Misinformation on the PUV modernization project

October 2017
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There was a transport strike today mainly involving jeepney drivers and operators who are protesting the proposed Public Utility Vehicle (PUV) Modernization project of the Philippine government. In this age of fake news, there’s also a lot of misinformation going around that gets shared even by well meaning people who probably just wanted to have it represent their opinion about the matter. Unfortunately, this only spreads more misinformation. Nagagatungan pa ng mga alanganing komento.

Following is the reply of the DOTr from their Facebook account:

“PAUNAWA | Isa-isahin natin para malinaw:

1. Hindi tataas sa P20 ang pasahe. Saan nakuha ng PISTON ang numerong ito?

2. Hindi lugi ang driver/operator. Kikita pa nga sila. Bakit?

– May 43% fuel savings ang mga Euro-4 compliant na sasakyan

– Mas maraming pasahero ang maisasakay dahil mula sa 16 persons seating capacity, magiging 22 na.

– Low to zero maintenance cost dahil bago ang unit

3. Hindi rin totoo na hindi kami nagsagawa ng mga konsultasyon.

Ang DOTr at LTFRB ay nagsagawa ng serye ng konsultasyon at dayalogo kasama ang mga PUV operaytor at mga tsuper sa buong bansa, kabilang dito ang mga organisadong grupo ng transportasyon at ang mga lokal na pamahalaaan.

Ang mga konsultasyong iyon ay isinagawa bago, habang, at pagkatapos malagdaan ang DO 2017-011. Sa katunayan, ang konsultasyon para sa paggawa ng mga local public transport route plan ng mga lokal na pamahalaan at ng mga kooperatiba sa transportasyon ay isinasagawa hanggang ngayon sa buong bansa. Maliban sa sector ng PUJ, nagsasagawa rin ang gobyerno ng konsultasyon sa mga operaytor at grupo ng Trucks for Hire (TH).

4. Hindi korporasyon ang makikinabang kundi mga:

– Local manufacturers na mag-didisenyo ng units

– Pilipinong manggagawa na magkakaroon ng trabaho at gagawa ng mga sasakyan

– Drivers at operators na lalaki na ang kita, uunlad pa ang industriya

– COMMUTERS na matagal nang nagtiis sa luma, hindi ligtas, at hindi komportableng public transportation units

5. Hindi anti-poor ang #PUVModernization Program.

Malaking bahagi ng Modernization Program ang Financial Scheme para sa drivers at operators. Sa tulong ng gobyerno, nasa 6% lamang ang interest rate, 5% naman ang equity, at aabot sa 7 taon ang repayment period. Magbibigay rin ng hanggang PHP80,000 na subsidy ang gobyerno sa kada unit para makatulong sa down payment.

Bukod dito, tandaan natin na ginhawa at kaligtasan ng mahihirap ding commuters ang hangad ng programa.

6. Walang phase out. Mananatili ang mga jeep sa kalsada. Pero sa pagkakataong ito, bago at modern na.

ANO ANG TOTOO?

Hindi na ligtas ang mga lumang PUVs sa Pilipinas. Takaw-aksidente na, polusyon pa ang dala. Hindi komportable at hassle sa mga commuters. Ang totoo, matagal na dapat itong ipinatupad. PANAHON NA PARA SA PAGBABAGO SA KALSADA.”

It is easy to get information directly from the DOTr about the PUV Modernization Program. Unfortunately, there are many who choose to propagate misinformation about the program based on hearsay or the misinformation they got from someone else. Call me biased but I know for a fact that a lot of people did honest, good hard work on this. The project was not developed overnight and a lot of thought was put into it. And so its unfair to say “hindi pinag-isipan” (not well thought of). Perhaps a better way is to engage the government about these matters and participate in constructive discussions rather than just pose opposition without even offering any alternative solutions.


8 Comments

  1. anonymous says:

    Good day!

    I’d just like to ask a question. I’ve read somewhere that Public transport franchises dependent on route proposals of operators. Not sure if that was accurate but does it mean that routes are actually the discretion of operators? Like no study necessary as long as they can fork out the cash?

    • d0ctrine says:

      Most routes were and are determined by the government. This was done by the DOTr (previously DPWTC, MOTC, DOTC) and not by the LTFRB, which was created only in the 1980s. However, they do accept proposals for new routes. These must be backed by studies showing the viability of the proposed route, which includes the number of units required to serve the estimated demand. There was a formula for this that is called the Route Measured Capacity (RMC) but was applicable only for fixed routes such as those by buses and jeepneys. While there are fees to be paid for processing applications, franchises are not for sale.

      • anonymous says:

        So out of curiosity, was DOTr (or former names) active in pursuing the routes that we have now? Or did the operators do the heavy lifting? Just trying to make sense of the actual before and possible after.

        Nevertheless, in light of the route rationalization with the jeepney modernization program, what’ll happen is that they’ll become stricter with routes, no? But in line with that, does it mean that they already have some stockpile of studies for possible lines for different places already and which ones are to be removed?

        Lastly, any plans to share your thoughts on the PUV modernization program? Really looking for an independent expert’s opinion with regards to the issue. 🙂

        Thank you for your reply! Do know that it is very much appreciated!

      • d0ctrine says:

        DOTr was active in assessing and determining the number of units assigned to each route through its Road Transport Planning Division. You can even say that in some cases, they were just too eager because of some financial benefits offered to some people in the past (I hope that’s no longer the case now). That was the case for buses, jeepneys and UV Express. For the latter, the last admin determined that the old formulas no longer applied and proceeded to make arbitrary additions to routes and units. DOTr staff will just claim many of the new routes are “missionary” but in truth they are accommodations. My opinion is that they approved too many UV Express units and so their proliferation. However, since that division had few staff to attend to nationwide concerns, I’m not so sure they were able to do their jobs the way it should be done.

        The current route rationalization is based on several studies done in the past including a couple that was funded by JICA. These are the EDSA Bus Revalidation Study and the MM Public Transport Study. UP through its National College of Public Administration and Governance (NCPAG) is now doing a study for DOTr precisely for this rationalization program. It is headed by Dr. Noriel Tiglao who is a faculty member of that college and who was involved in MMUTIS and the update study MUCEP.

        Cheers!

      • anonymous says:

        And a bit unrelated, uhm… Do you know of any sources of info and data for traffic demand for Metro Manila?

        Something like the following?
        Traffic Demand by Mode of Transportation in Metro Manila, 1996
        Mode – Person Trips – Vehicle Trips – Avreage Occupancy
        http://open_jicareport.jica.go.jp/pdf/11633419_16.PDF

      • d0ctrine says:

        Those are old. You should look for the MUCEP report, which is the basis for the JICE Dream Plan for Mega Manila that includes their proposal for the subway. The data and report are officially with DOTr and I’m not sure they have published this in their online library (http://libopac.jica.go.jp/) but parts of it are in the Roadmap study for MM and its surrounding regions (R3 and R4A) that is available in this library. In any case, there are copies of the full MMUTIS reports at the libraries of UP Diliman’s School of Urban and Regional Planning and National Center for Transportation Studies.

      • anonymous says:

        Good day again.

        I would just like to ask if there is a compiled resource of all the MMUTIS data online? Because the file attached from JICA seems to be just a citation to the 1996-1999 study. Not the actual one?

      • d0ctrine says:

        There’s none online. The only person who probably has the complete data set aside from the Japanese consultant company ALMEC is Dr. Noriel Tiglao of UP NCPAG. He’s used it for transport modeling. There’s another modeler at DLSU, Dr. Alex Fillone of their Civil Engineering Department but he is using data from the MMUTIS update study (MUCEP).

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