Leaders of various transportation groups in Bacolod City were upset that Regional Director Richard Osmeña of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) did not show up for a scheduled dialogue organized by lone district Congressman Greg Gasataya and AbangLikod Rep. Stephen Paduano.
According to Diego Malacad of United Drivers-Operators Center (UNDOC), Osmeña failed to show up at the meeting and instead sent his team, composed of 6 representatives from the regional office. Osmeña was unable to physically joined the dialogue due to short notice.
Malacad underscored that their group opted to forego the second day of their strike, which crippled public transit operations last Monday, because LTFRB’s Osmeña promised to listen to their complaints personally. Malacad went on to say that they had been duped once again by the regional director.
The meeting was supposed to provide a proper venue for drivers to air their grievances and concerns to the LTFRB, however, transport leaders were dismayed since the officials sent by the LTFRB were unable to address the issues voiced by the transport industry.
At the meeting, transport leaders asked that the distribution of the subsidies be put on hold until an official list of drivers and operators is finalized according to Albert Villanueva, Sentrong Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Operators Negros (SStone). According to the group, LTFRB needs to come up with a list of legitimate beneficiaries of its P6,500 subsidy to mitigate the effects of the series of oil price increases.
The transport leaders also stressed that the decrease in fuel prices on Tuesday was not enough to mitigate previous increases.