A number of modernized public utility vehicles (PUVs) have begun plying this city’s major routes, in compliance with the government’s PUV modernization program.
The Butuan City Information Office said on Wednesday that the initial batch of electric PUVs consist of six Solar E-jeeps, four Class-2 single tire, and five Class-3 double-tire modern vehicles.
Each of the modernized jeeps cost PHP2.1 million, the information office added.
The modernization program is being implemented by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) with the support of the city government of Butuan.
The modern PUVs are serving this city’s routes 12 and 13, with the same fare of PHP8 as those being operated by traditional public utility jeepneys.
May Diez, Butuan City Information Office chief, told the Philippine News Agency (PNA) that transport cooperatives Balangay Transport Service Cooperative (Baltransco) and Diamond Transport Service Cooperative (Datsco) are operating the modern PUVs in the city.
Baltransco is operating route 12 while Datsco plies route 13, Diez added.
“The people of Butuan welcome the arrival and operation of the modern vehicles,” she said, adding that commuters find the new jeeps more comfortable.
In a separate interview, Councilor Gemma P. Tabada, president of the Liga ng mga Barangay in Butuan, welcomed the arrival and operation of the modernized vehicles and regarded it as a big leap for the city’s development.
“We cannot stay with the old technology. We need to adopt and go with the flow of the new technologies in order to advance our development,” Tabada said.
She also told PNA that the League of Barangays is pushing for the approval of franchise for taxi operations in Butuan City and the nearby provinces in the Caraga region.
Tabada pointed out that tourists, both foreign and domestic, frequent Butuan City and the tourist spots around the entire region every year.
“These tourists need the services of taxis for comfortable and fast travel to their destinations,” she said.
Recently, LTFRB-13 announced the approval of 75 new vehicles acquired by the Datsco group that are certified as modernized and compliant.
LTFRB-13 said fifteen of the new units will soon ply the routes from Butuan to Nasipit, Agusan del Norte; 15 units for the Banza-Langihan Butuan intracity route; 15 units for Dapa-General Luna in Siargao Island; 15 units for Dapa-Pilar in Siargao Island; and 15 for Dapa-Sta. Monica, also in Siargao Island. (PNA)