DOTC chief defends MRT, LRT fare hike

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 29 2014 03:49 PM | Updated as of Dec 29 2014 11:49 PM

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Transportation and Communications defended the looming increase in MRT and LRT fares.

Transportation Secretary Jun Abaya said the adjustments, which will take effect on January 4, is necessary to improve the poor state of the railway system.

"Maski mag-take effect ito ng January 4, may paraan ang korte kung tingin nila di makatarungan ito ay mag-iissue pa rin ng TRO even after January 4. Sa amin, tingin ko nararapat gawin ito kaya ganito nangyari sa ating riles. Ito ginawa para di maranasan naranasan natin," Abaya told DZMM.

The DOTC is implementing a P11-base fire plus additional one peso per kilometer for MRT and LRT.

That means, an MRT trip from North Avenue to Taft would cost P28, from the current fare of P15. A single journey LRT-1 trip from Roosevelt to Baclaran would be P30, from P20.

A single journey LRT-2 trip from Recto to Santolan would be P25, from P15.

But activists and commuters' group Riles Network are criticizing the fare hike. They challenged President Aquino to defend the increase in a public debate.

The protesters also say they're ready to take their battle to court.

The last time fares for LRT-1 went up was in 2003, while fares for LRT-2 have never been increased since it opened 11 years ago. Meanwhile, since the MRT was opened in 1999, its fares were cut twice. - With ANC