Jeepney drivers and operators of Cebu Province, who had been greatly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, can acquire modern public utility vehicles (PUV) soon as Governor Gwendolyn Garcia facilitates to fast-track the implementation of the loan program to purchase the modernized jeepneys.
This is in pursuant to the Public Utility Vehicle Modernization Program (PUVMP), a flagship program of the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte.
In a meeting with representatives from the Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) and Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) on Thursday, July 9, the governor expressed her desire to have this program granted soon since jeepney drivers have no other means of income due to the pandemic.
Jeepney operators and drivers were also encouraged to form either cooperatives or corporations for easier access to financial institutions.
According to Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) 7 Director Eduardo Montealto Jr., 80 percent of jeepney operators and drivers have already consolidated and the remaining 20 percent expressed their willingness to form a cooperative.
“We will do this fast kay wala’y income ni sila. Lisud og kutoy na ang tiyan,” she stressed, adding that currently, thousands of jeepney drivers and operators have no work.
Garcia said the implementation of the PUVMP during the pandemic is timely as this can change the mindset of jeepney operators and drivers to adopt the modernized PUV for the safety and convenience of the commuters.
She said the modern PUVs are designed to be eco-friendly, road-worthy, and convenient to the riding public.
Financial institution representatives committed to prioritize the said program.
The governor also requested to decrease the current 7 percent interest rate per annum of both LBP and DBP to 5 percent, if possible. Applying the 7 percent interest, Garcia said P566 per day will be the amount to be paid per modern PUV.
Bank representatives assured to bring the matter before their central offices.
“We have to do this and do this fast,” Garcia said. She is set to meet the officers of the cooperatives composed of jeepney operators and drivers, LTFRB-7, Land Transportation Office (LTO) 7, DBP, and LBP in Liloan town on July 16. (Mylen Manto)