Some jeepney operators allegedly withdraw aid from bank than use it for fuel

MANILA, Philippines — Some jeepney operators are allegedly withdrawing the money that was mainly to be used in exchange for fuel from accredited gas stations, the leader of Pasang Masda revealed in a congressional inquiry on Monday.

In a House committee on transportation hearing, Pasang Masda president Roberto “Obet” Martin told lawmakers that fuel subsidies credited in Landbank ATM cards are not supposed to be withdrawn or held in cash since the aid should be directly exchanged for fuel at gas stations.

“Now, hindi ho pupwedeng i-withdraw ‘yan… ‘Pag iwinithdraw ng operator ‘yan—parang ATM (automated teller machine) po ‘yan, pwede mo i-withdraw… May red flag diyan. Ibig sabihin, winithdraw ang pera, hindi ho ginamit sa subsidiya,” he said.

(Now, that should not be withdrawn. When the operator withdraws it—it’s like an ATM, you can withdraw it… There is a red flag. It means the money is withdrawn and not used as a subsidy.)

Martin said the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) issued show-cause orders to concerned jeepney operators to explain why the subsidy was withdrawn from the bank ATM.

“Ishino-show cause po nila ‘yan para magpaliwanag sa LTFRB para ho maproteksyunan ang pera na intended for the driver,” he said.

(They are given show-cause orders to explain to the LTFRB to protect the money that is intended for the driver.)

Samar 1st District Rep. Edgar Mary Sarmiento, chair of the panel, hoped that concerned agencies “could come up with a good system.”

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