'Still no justice despite Don Mariano franchise revocation'

by Dharel Placido, ABS-CBNnews.com

Posted at Jan 14 2014 04:36 PM | Updated as of Jan 15 2014 05:33 PM

Don Mariano bus wreckage

MANILA – The son of one of the victims of the fatal fall of Don Mariano Transit bus off Skyway in December last year welcomed the revocation of the franchise of the bus company, but said their search for justice does not end there.

Roidel Tolentino, whose father Rodel died in the bus fall, fears that the victims' case would be forgotten soon following the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board's (LTFRB) revocation of the franchise of Don Mariano Transit's 78-unit fleet.

"Masaya kasi at least kahit papano nabigyan ng katarungan ang pagkamatay ng tatay namin. Pero kasi nandun pa rin yung doubt na, 'Ano nang mangyayari sa kaso namin? Mahahabol pa ba namin sila?'" Roidel told dzMM.

"Iyung bus nila, malilipat lang sa same company nila na pwedeng maulit ang nangyari," he added, referring to the other bus companies being operated by the owners of Don Mariano Transit.

Roidel said he and other relatives of the victims are planning to file a civil case against the owners of Don Mariano Transit, but he admitted they need a lawyer who would represent them in court. The driver of the bus, Carmelo Calatcat, was among the 21 fatalities in the accident.

Roidel also lamented that his family has yet to receive the P75,000 from the insurance company of Don Mariano Transit.

"Kami ang biktima eh, dapat agad-agad yan. Ang insurance dapat automatic iyan…Kahit manghingi kami ng ilang milyon hindi na maibabalik ang buhay ng tao. Konsiderasyon na lang. Kung ano ang hingin namin bakit hindi nila ibigay?" he said.

Roidel said he and the other victims' relatives plan to keep tabs on Don Mariano's case so that a similar accident would not happen in the future.

"Sa amin sana gusto naming na magsama-sama kami, isang grupo, na mamonitor kung ano yung mangyayari sa mga bus nila o sa company at sa kaso, kung may pupuntahan pa ang kaso na pina-file naming," he said.

"Sa LTFRB, kung talagang ipapatupad nila ng maayos at hihigpitan, kung hindi nila bibigyan ng prangkisa, walang mangyayari. Pero kung mababayaran o makakalimutan, mauulit lang din po yun."