CAGAYAN DE ORO

NorMin transport group walks out from senate hearing

A TRANSPORT group in Northern Mindanao walks out from a senate committee hearing which tackles the effects of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion or Train Law at the University of Science and Technology of Southern Philippines (USTP) in Cagayan de Oro City, Wednesday, July 18.

The Solidarity of Transport Alliance in Northern Mindanao-Pinagkaisang Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Operator Nationwide (Starex-Piston) said the senate committee hearing on public services chaired by Senator Grace Poe was a "Lutong Macau."

Starex-Piston spokesperson Ringo Lago said they walked out of the venue because they were not able to speak and present their side because of time constraint.

"Sa atong lantaw lutong Macau to gumikan kay mas daghan nabati nato sa side sa gobyerno unya dili tanan sector sa transportation nakahigayon og present sa among side," Lago said.

Poe had apologized for failure to preside the hearing because her flight was cancelled due to bad weather.

The Mindanao-leg public hearing which was supposed to tackle the effects of Train particularly on transportation, fuel, electricity and water, turned into an "exploratory meeting."

"Narinig ko po ang inyong hinanaing. Kahit andito po ako sa Manila, mabilis pong pinapadala sa akin ang inyong pinag-usapan. Talagang kailangan na i-rollout ang mga tulong sa inyo at alam ko hirap na hirap na kayo at inis na inis na rin sa bagal ng kilos din sa gobyerno. Makakaasa kayo na tutulungan ko kayo sapagkat ito ay karapatan ninyo, nasa batas po ito," Poe added.

Prior to the supposed hearing, Poe was scheduled to meet with transport leaders and public utility vehicle drivers at the Agora market here.

She was also set to talk to "motorela" drivers, as well as inspect the first ever premium double-decker bus in Mindanao that will ply the Cagayan de Oro-Davao-Bukidnon route.

Poe's staff announced that a subsequent hearing will be held at the Philippine Senate in Manila on July 31 to formally adopt the discussions in Cagayan de Oro.

"Palagi naman akong nasa Cagayan de Oro kaya pupuntahan ko kayo sa lalong madaling panahon," Poe said.

"Andito po kami para tumulong, para masiguro na ang pangakong tulong ng gobyerno," Poe added.


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