3rd, 4th petitions vs. LRT, MRT fare hikes filed at SC

By , on January 8, 2015


Workers hold a rally in front of the Metro Rail Transit (MRT) 3 North Avenue Station in Quezon City on Monday (Jan. 5, 2015) to express opposition to fare increases of the MRT and Light Rail Transit (LRT) Lines 1 and 2. (PNA photo by Jess M. Escaros Jr.)
Workers hold a rally in front of the Metro Rail Transit (MRT) 3 North Avenue Station in Quezon City on Monday (Jan. 5, 2015) to express opposition to fare increases of the MRT and Light Rail Transit (LRT) Lines 1 and 2. (PNA photo by Jess M. Escaros Jr.)

MANILA — The third and fourth petition against the fare increase at the Light Rail Transit (LRT) and Metro Rail Transit (MRT) was filed before the Supreme Court (SC) on Tuesday.

The new petition was filed by the United Filipino Consumers and Commuters (UFCC) led by their president Rodolfo Javellana and the Bayan Muna group led by party-list Reps. Neri Colmenares and Carlos Zarate.

Named respondents in the petition were the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC), Metrorail Transit Corporation (MRTC) and the Light Rail Transit Corporation (LRTC), as well as DOTC Sectretary Joseph Emilio Avaya, MRT Officer-in-Charge Renato San Jose and LRT Administrator Honorito Chaneco.

The petitioners asked the SC to issue a temporary restraining order (TRO) to stop the implementation of the assailed DOTC Department Order No. 2014-014 declaring the fare hikes at the LRT and MRT.

They also asked the SC to declare the said DOTC order as “unconstitutional”.

The petitioners argued that the DOTC “committed abuse of discretion” when it approved the fare hike because the commuters were not consulted even before the fare hike was implemented.

On the part of Bayan Muna, it argued that the DOTC has no jurisdiction in the grant of fare hike because there is no law granting such an authority to the DOTC.

Because of the fare hike, the petitioners said, the small workers, who comprise the majority of the commuters of LRT and MRT will be oppressed, and that the same is a violation of the provision in the 1987 Philippine Constitution pertaining to “social justice”.