JEEPNEY drivers plying the Mandaue City-Ayala Mall route were barred from entering the mall’s terminal since Saturday for lack of accreditation with the private facility.
Romeo Armamento, vice president of the transport group Andar’s north district, said several drivers ended up arguing with passengers who refused to pay the P10 fare when the vehicle wouldn’t enter the terminal.
The prohibition came a week after Citom prohibited Mandaue-Manalili PUJs from entering the vicinity of the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral.
“We are like squatters who have been evicted from the Ayala Mall terminal,” said Armamento.
In case they are completely denied access to the Ayala terminal, Armamento proposed that jeepney with route number 21B and 22B be allowed to enter uptown Cebu City passing B. Rodriguez Street to V. Rama Avenue then to the Citilink terminal.
He also proposed that Mandaue-Manalili PUJs, with around 700 drivers, should be allowed access to Plaza Independencia as an alternative route.
The Andar official also asked that they be allowed to assign their own attendants in designated jeepney stops to look after abusive drivers.
City Administrator Jose Marie Poblete and Citom office head Rafael Yap asked the parties to put their proposals into writing so these could be studied by the Citom board.
About 30 operators and drivers led by Armamento went to Cebu City hall yesterday to seek Mayor Michael Rama’s intervention.
Since Rama was on a trip to Singapore, Poblete and Yap met with the group at the mayor’s conference room.
Armamento said starting Saturday, without advance notice, Ayala terminal management barred entry of 21B and 22B route vehicles in the mall terminal.
He explained that when City Ordinance No. 1837 was strictly implemented requiring jeepneys to use only designated terminals, 21B and 22 B drivers were forced to use the Ayala Mall terminal. However, only 69 sought accreditation with the Ayala management and were issued a new route number 20A and were allowed to unload and unload passengers there.
The rest kept their route no. 21B and 22B numbers. They were allowed to only unload passengers at the mall. The use of Ayala Mall terminal has been made exclusive to jeepneys of route no. 20A, he said.
The new policy is hurting over 300 drivers who take turns plying 70 PUJ units with route nos. 21B and 22B, said Armamento.
Armamento said they needed the city’s intervention.
“The Ayala terminal is privately run. What we can do is appeal to the management to allow you to enter the terminal,” Poblete said.
Yap of Citom said prohibiting their entry in the private terminal is not a violation of their travel line to ply routes inMandaue City and Cebu City.
“The travel line only says Cebu City. It doesn’t specify where in Cebu City. Chief of Reporters Doris C. Bongcac