Politics

Group raises pending Supreme Court case on train fares   

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PHILIPPINE STAR/ MIGUEL DE GUZMAN

A GROUP on Thursday raised a pending case they filed in 2015 before the Supreme Court questioning train fare hikes after a reportedly approved increase for the Light Railway Transit lines (LRT) in Metro Manila.  

Carlos I. Zarate, executive vice-president of party-list Bayan Muna, prodded the High Court to rule on the petition to review the “unilateral and unjustified imposition by the government of fare hikes” in the Metro Rail Transit 3 Line and the LRT lines effective January 2015.  

“The former DOTC (Department of Transportation and Communication) pushed for a fare hike on all the lightrail systems in December 2014 saying that this is geared to improve the services of MRT and the LRT. But instead of improving the services, for instance the MRT service worsened with 3 to 4 daily glitches, with some even endangering the lives of passengers after the increases during that time,” Mr. Zarate said in a statement.  

Mr. Zarate said there was insufficient public consultation for another fare increase.   

The government-owned Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA) issued a statement Thursday clarifying that the reported fare hike approval for LRT lines 1 and 2 is still subject to the regulatory process, including public consultations and full board concurrence.   

Bayan Muna said they are still considering whether to file a motion to expedite the pending Supreme Court case. In 2017, the group filed a motion to resolve their petition.  

“As our people are now much burdened with the non-stop rising of prices of the basic commodities and utilities, we plead for the High Court to resolve the said case the soonest,” Mr. Zarate said. — Beatriz Marie D. Cruz