As if the pending renewal of accreditation from the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) isn’t a big enough problem for online transport systems Grab and Uber, they’ll also have to deal with a sizable fine for numerous violations.

Transport Network Companies (TNC) Grab and Uber have been fine Php 5 million each as some of their transport network vehicle services (TNVS) have been found operating without certificates of public convenience (CPC) or provisional authority (PA).

“It appears that TNCs are not without fault for TNVS to be operating illegally and eventually apprehended. We need to be mindful of our responsibilities not only as TNVS but also as TNCs because you as owners of this digital technology that brings the riders and driver together has the equal responsibility as of those who have secured franchises under the public transportation service," said LTFRB Chairman Martin Delgra.

Other infractions committed include discrepancies in the names of drivers recorded on the LTFRB database and their application forms, plus failure to screen driver applicants before endorsing them to the board.

Both companies have admitted to these faults.

“We note also the candidness of the parties concerned Grab and Uber in admitting the fact that they are privy to having the situation which brought about the colorum operation of TNVS in their system,” added Delgra.

The Board did not suspend properly accredited Grab and Uber TNVS to make sure that their services will not be interrupted and commuters will still be able to book rides online. 

“We respect the right of the riding public to avail of TNCs like Grab and Uber. However we cannot let go of the violations. As the enforcing body of the government, we must put things into order,” said LTFRB board member and spokesperson Aileen Lizada.

“We aim to set a ceiling on the total number of TNVS to be deployed to address the needs of the riding public and what is appropriate for the TNCs to sustain their operations especially during the peak times,” added Lizada.

The Philippines is one of the first countries to legalize TNVS operations such as Grab and Uber with a set of guidelines and regulations.

Before they operate, TNVS must secure a 1-year Certificate of Public Convenience from LTFRB through the TNC. Each car owner will pay Php 510 for the first two applied units. Both the TNC and the TNVS must be registered with the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) to ensure proper taxes are paid as well.

The LTFRB also required operators of TNVS to properly mark their vehicles as such; this has not been complied with by most operators.