Senators push to continue pilot test for motorcycle taxis


Posted at Jan 20 2020 09:47 PM | Updated as of Jan 20 2020 10:14 PM

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MANILA – The motorcycle taxi pilot study is necessary to craft laws that will govern the service, a lawmaker said, as the group mandated to oversee the tests on Monday recommended its termination. 

The pilot run will help lawmakers identify “proper safeguards” such as accredited training centers, policies on safety, drug tests and insurance, among others, to protect both riders and the public, Senator Grace Poe told DZMM radio.

“Lahat ng bagay na yan dapat mailagay sa batas but more specifically sa IRR [implementing rules and regulations] which the law is the basis of. We have to be able to actually have a study kasi hindi naman petiks ito eh gagawa kami ng batas na hindi naman namin binase sa pagaaral,” Poe, who chairs the Senate Committee on Public Services, said. 

(All of these things should be in the law, but more specifically in the IRR, which the law is the basis of. We have to be able to actually have a study because we won't make a law that has no study to back it up.)

“Nainis kami sa LTFRB [Land Transporation Franchising and Regulatory Board] kasi parang hindi nila pinaglaanan ng oras ito, basta na lang sinabi nila na wag na lang,” she said. 

(We were dismayed with the LTFRB because it looks like they did not put any effort in this, they simply said 'nevermind'.)

Starting next week, motorcycle taxis will be deemed "illegal” if the recommendation of the technical working group led by Antonio Gardiola Jr. to terminate the pilot run will be approved. 

The TWG has sent its Jan. 17 letter of recommendation to terminate the test run to Transport Secretary Arthur Tugade and the Congress for approval. 

Senator Bong Go said he asked Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade and Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) chairman Martin Delgra to continue with the pilot program.
Go also said he would urged President Rodrigo Duterte to back the continued pilot test for motorcycle taxis.

An official of motorcycle taxi service Angkas meanwhile welcomed the Senate's push to have the pilot run continue.

"We thank the Senate for recognizing the value of pushing through with the extended motorcycle taxi pilot run, and recommending the TWG to suspend their earlier decision of canceling the pilot," said Angkas chief transport advocate George Royeca. 

The extended pilot run for motor taxis was supposed to end in March.