BAGUIO City Mayor Mauricio Domogan said the implementation of the government’s public utility vehicle (PUV) modernization program should be on a case-to-case basis with road worthiness of the vehicles as main consideration.
The local chief executive said the memorandum from Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade authorizing the implementation of the PUV modernization program is a mere office order subject to possible legal action by concerned sectors affected by its implementation by March next year so it should be implemented selectively.
“If PUVs are proven to be road-worthy based on assessment for road worthiness and do not emit smoke beyond the safe standards, then the same should be allowed to continue their operations but if the PUVs do not pass the said tests, then they will not be allowed to continue operations,” Domogan stressed.
Further, he pointed out the new model of PUVs to replace those that pass the stringent road-worthiness test should be suitable to the peculiar terrain of Baguio city and the Cordillera to guarantee the safety of motorists and passengers.
Domogan said the local government supports the clamor of the local transport sector in calling for the exclusion of Baguio from the pilot areas for the implementation of the PUV modernization because the jeepney models being eyed for use seem not to be suitable to existing mountain roads.
On the other hand, Domogan explained requiring PUV operators to establish cooperatives or corporations should also be optional instead of mandatory so that those who are willing to put up cooperatives and corporations for their transport business can do so while those who can afford to individually operate their transport business can do the same.
Earlier, local transport groups expressed their vehement opposition to the implementation of the government’s PUV modernization program because the jeepneys being proposed to replace the existing ones seem not to be suitable to the mountain roads which could pose a serious threat to the safety of motorists and passengers. (PR)