MANILA - About 30,000 ride-sharing cars are expected to join the "transport holiday" on Monday to protest the ban on hatchbacks as well as "pahirap policies" by regulators, an official of a drivers group organizing the event said on Sunday.
Jun de Leon, chairman of the Metro Manila Hatchback Community, said drivers joining the protest will go offline from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. but will not block streets and hold any march.
De Leon said members of the transport network vehicle service (TNVS) community are demanding that public transport regulators lift the ban on hatchbacks, and remove policies which are making it difficult for ride-sharing drivers to get permits to operate.
He said the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board had initially allowed hatchbacks to operate as TNVS units until 2021 based on Memorandum Circular 2018-005 issued last year.
But this year, the LTFRB declared that hatchbacks would not be allowed in ride-sharing services because of safety reasons.
"Yun lang naman po ang kahilingan namin sa LTFRB na ipatupad ang memorandum circular na yun," De Leon said in an interview with DZMM Teleradyo.
He also said that the LTFRB has made it more difficult for drivers to get a provisional authority and certificate of public conveyance.
Among the new requirements applicants needed to submit, he said, was a certificate of bank conformity for drivers whose cars are being financed by bank loans.
De Leon said banks are asking up to P149,000 to issue this certificate, while other banks refuse to issue such.
Former LTFRB Board Member Aileen Lizada, meanwhile, said regulators should also implement the memorandum on hatchbacks.
"Why are we dismissing hatchbacks when we already have the MC? Kaya nagkakagulo-gulo because there is a policy that is not being implemented," Lizada said in another DZMM interview.
Lizada added that regulators should be more "flexible" with TNVS policies while waiting for Congress to come up with laws governing ride-sharing platforms.