In a closed door meeting initiated by Senator Grace Poe, chair of the Senate Committee on Public Services, embattled transport network company (TNC) Uber admitted the error of its ways and promised to comply henceforth with the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB).
Senator Joseph Victor Ejercito stated that just because Uber continues to receive strong support from the riding public does not mean they can get away with ignoring government regulations.
“I know that they’re popular, that’s why we want them to be back on the streets as soon as possible. We just made it clear that we want the interest of the riding public as a priority,” said Ejercito.
On the other hand, Senator Paolo Benigno Aquino IV suggested that the LTFRB should have simply fined Uber instead of suspending its operations as it will adversely affect not only the livelihood of the ride-hailing company’s transport network vehicle services (TNVS) but also hundreds of Filipinos who depend on it for public transportation.
“Halting operations of Uber will only hurt the drivers and the riding public. A monetary penalty will give us the same result without having to hassle our commuters,” said Aquino.
Moving forward, it was agreed upon in the meeting that a new regulatory framework must be established to improve services of TNCs and even taxi fleets.
Uber Technologies Southeast Asia manager Michael Brown was in the meeting and personally apologized to LTFRB Chairman Martin Delgra for accepting applications for accreditations despite the board’s orders. Brown futher reassured the regulatory body head that their company will comply from now on.
The LTFRB will hold a special hearing on August 23, Wednesday to re-consider Uber's suspension order.