App-based ride-hailing company Grab may have the authority to operate sedans but not jeepneys and motorcycles, the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) said on Thursday, March 3.
LTFRB board member lawyer Ariel Inton made the statement after Grab this week introduced a free jeepney service GrabJeep, which will run for two months.
Inton told the Philippines News Agency that the LTFRB is also set to issue a cease and desist order to GrabJeep just like what it did to its motorcycle service, GrabBike.
To recall, the agency on Wednesday, March 2, conducted a sting operation to prove that GrabBike was still operating despite a cease-and-desist order issued against in January.
The LTFRB previously said that GrabBike cannot operate as public transportation unless guidelines to authorize the service are finalized.
?Aside from GrabBike, GrabJeep is also subjected to cease and desist because there is no department order that specifies them to operate motorcycles or jeepneys,? Inton said.
?They (Grab) should not introduce these services to the market without permission from DOTC (Department of Transportation and Communications) and LTFRB,? he said.
?They don?t ask us first that?s why there?s a problem. Because they do not operate under a franchise, we cannot be responsible if a passenger meets an accident,? he added.
Inton also stressed that allowing GrabJeep to operate would also be ?unfair? to the jeep franchise holders.
Grab, however, maintained that their jeep service was being offered for free and is only meant to serve as a call to improve the country?s public transport industry.
GrabJeep units are equipped with wireless Internet, television, and air-conditioning system and will have daily trips along EDSA. — PNA