MANILA - Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade is "very much willing" to reconsider an order allowing some provincial buses to operate in Metro Manila after operators complained of loss of income.
The Department of Transportation's DO 2018-25 required all provincial buses to end their service at the Paranque Integrated Terminal Exchange, but 195 buses were exempted.
"He is very much willing to reconsider the Department Order, review the order in the light of the many considerations, many issues at hand," DOTr Undersecretary Mark De Leon said during the Senate Committee hearing on Public Services.
Bus operators claimed they were losing income as commuters chose buses that can directly service Lawton instead of those ending in PITX, Cavite-Batangas Service Cooperative President and Chairman Rommel Manalo said.
Currently, only 5 buses depart from PITX every hour, De Leon said. Committee chair Senator Grace Poe said the DOTr was the one to blame.
"Kasalanan nyo 'yan. Hindi nga ako DOTr, ano lang to common sense lang ito eh. Ewan ko lang baka yun ang wala," Poe said.
(It's your fault. I'm not from the DOTr, but this is common sense. I don't know, maybe that's what is missing.)
Manalo said existing city buses should be enough to cover passengers coming from the south if the seamless transfer promised by the country's first "landport" will be properly implemented.