MANILA -- The Department of Justice (DOJ) found no legal impediment for the Philippine National Railways (PNR) to revive its bus service system which used to operate in the early 1970s.
In a two-page legal opinion, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said PNR's plan to operate a bus service system is well within its mandate, under Republic Act No. 4156, which created the PNR.
De Lima issued the opinion upon the request of PNR general manager Joseph Allan Dilay.
Dilay lamented that the PNR, which used to operate bus lines for the riding public going from Manila to Dagupan City, has stopped doing so.
Dilay added that the PNR is planning to revive its bus services, due to an increasing clamor from the riding public.
De Lima noted that under R.A. 4156, as further amended by R.A. 10638, the PNR is created "to serve as instrumentality of the government in providing railroad and transportation system."
"The purpose and powers of PNR are clear and explicit from the... provisions of the PNR Charter, as amended, that there is no need for interpretation, only application," the DOJ chief said.
De Lima added that as part of its mandate, the PNR can own or operate railroad, tramways and other kinds of transportation, vessels and pipelines for the purpose of transporting passengers, mail and property to any point in the country.
"Thus, apart from its power to own and operate railroad, the PNR is legally and expressly empowered to own and operate any 'other kinds of land transportation' for the purpose of transporting, for consideration, passengers, among others," De Lima added.