LTFRB disputes Angkas’ claims

TRANSPORTATION officials have denied the claims of motorcycle ride-hailing firm Angkas that 17,000 riders are expected to lose their jobs.

“According to the [Inter-agency Technical Working Group] for motorcycle taxis (MC), there is no truth to the earlier statement released by Angkas, branding the [transport network company’s] statement as ‘untrue and without basis,” said the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) in a statement on Saturday.

According to LTFRB, the technical working group (TWG) said there will actually be more motorcycle taxis expected to operate next year. This is because it has allowed new TNCs MoveIt and JoyRide to take part in the agency’s safety study through a pilot run of their services.

From Angkas’ 27,000, the number will rise to 39,000 with riders from the new providers, said TWG for MC taxis chairman Antonio Gardiola. This is in compliance with the TWG’s limit of 10,000 riders in Manila and 3,000 riders in Cebu per service provider.

“Nagdagdag tayo ng dalawang TNC upang hindi ma-monopolize ang mga datos ng mga kalahok sa pagaaral na ito,” said Gardiola.

[Translation: We added two transport network companies so there is no monopoly of the participants’ data in the study.]

Angkas earlier lamented this rule in a statement, saying the limit would mean removing 17,000 riders from their force, thus stripping these riders of their jobs. Angkas’ statement drew support from netizens which led the topic #SaveAngkas to trend on Twitter.

Gardiola explained that the study will look into the safety of motorcycles as a mode of public transportation. The TWG also extended the TNCs’ pilot run to continue until March 23, 2020.