Calinog Mayor Alex Centena has made his stand on the dispute between Vallacar Transit, Inc. (VTI) and Calinog Bus Line (CBL), saying that competition is “good”.
“We are in a democratic setting. If there is a competition, they [transport companies] will strive to improve their services. My people will benefit from it,” Centena said.
CBL is complaining against the VTI Ceres buses plying the central Iloilo line. The bus company said that their income has been affected by the entry of the 29 Ceres buses on its route.
VTI, for its part, said the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) Region VI allowed them to ply the central line.
“I’m not favoring any transport company. My people’s welfare is my primary concern. People have the right to choose what they think is safe to ride,” Centena said.
VTI temporarily diverted the trips of its Ceres buses from northern line after the issuance of Joint Administrative Order (JAO) No. 2014-01 last year.
The order penalized public vehicles that travel on routes outside their franchise which is described as out-of-line violation.
As part of the LTFRB’s Rationalization of Routes Program for provincial public utility buses, the board then issued a circular suspending the out-of-line rule.
VTI submitted an application to the LTFRB-6 for the program.
While waiting for the decision of the LTFRB central office on its application, VTI was allowed to serve the central line.
The suspension of the out-of-line rule, according to the LTFRB-6, will last until March 15, 2015 because of rationalization program. IMT