PROTOTYPE models of the new version of public utility jeepneys (PUJs) as part of the government’s mass transport modernization program are expected to arrive in this city and will be road-tested for public use, Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board-10 (LTFRB-10) regional director Aminoden Guro said.
These electric or solar-powered jeepneys, more commonly known as “e-jeepneys (e-jeepneys),” will showcase how these vehicles operate for the appreciation of the riding public and PUJ operators and drivers, Guro said.
“Before we only heard about the modernization program, but it’s now a reality. People will see for themselves how efficient and convenience these e-jeeps are,” he said.
He said One Team, the private entity that acquired these e-jeepneys, already has its initial operation in Marikina City, with Cagayan de Oro as one of its pilot areas in the country.
Each unit costs more than a million pesos and can be acquired through a loan scheme at Land Bank.
One Team will bring in 15 units of these e-jeepneys, which are equipped with a global positioning system (GPS), an air conditioning system, a wi-fi connection, dashcam, a swiping machine for the fare. It also provides the ramp for the persons with disabilities.
Fares will be loaded to a card and can be bought at convenience stores and cellphone load dealers. It will become the new mode of paying.
These new jeepneys, which can accommodate more than 20 passengers, are also Omnibus Franchise Guideline (OFG)-compliant.
The proposed route for these e-jeepneys is from Barangay Puerto, this city, to Barangay Igpit, in Opol town, passing through the newly opened coastal road.
Guro said the e-jeepney route proposal is now pending at the city council of Cagayan de Oro, and is incorporated into the comprehensive route plan of the city’s Roads and Traffic Administration (RTA).
He said the LTFRB-10 has also conducted information campaign to notify operators and drivers of dilapidated jeepneys, especially those that are operating for 15 years or more, that they will be facing legal sanctions if they will not comply with the directive of the government.
Under the PUV modernization program of the Duterte administration, old jeepney owners have three years to dispose of their units and purchase the new PUJ models.
Last year, Pres. Rodrigo Duterte has even announced that he wants the older PUJs off the streets by January.
Published in the SunStar Cagayan de Oro newspaper on January 12, 2018.