By Hannah Torregoza
Reelectionist Senator Juan Edgardo “Sonny” Angara has called on the more than 80,000 legitimate franchise holders to claim their fuel voucher cards and avail of the government’s subsidy program under the Pantawid Pasada Program (PPP).
Angara made the appeal after the Department of Finance (DOF) reported a low turnout in the distribution of fuel subsidy cards to qualified franchise holders of public utility jeepneys (PUJs).
“Hinihikayat po natin ang mga lehitimong jeepney franchise holder na hindi pa naki-claim ang kanilang Pantawid Pasada card na magtungo sa pinakamalapit na tanggapan ng LTFRB para makuha na nila ang inilaang fuel subsidy sa kanila ng gobyerno, (We are calling legitimate jeepney franchise holders to claim their Pantawid Pasada card at the nearest LTFRB branch to get their fuel subsidy the government has allocated for them),” Angara said in a statement.
Angara was referring to the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) which is in-charge of the distribution of the fuel subsidy cards.
The DOF had said that only 74,714 fuel vouchers were distributed out of the 155,337 available cards, or 42.43 percent of the total national target coverage for 176,085 legitimate PUJ units as of January 15, 2019. This means that 80,623 cards remain unclaimed.
The region with the lowest claim rate was Region 10 with only 28.52 percent, while the highest was Region 8 (Eastern Visayas) at 71.64 percent.
The PPP is one of the government’s flagship social mitigation measures to qualified PUJ franchise holders for 2018 and 2019 to ensure timely assistance to mitigate the effects of high fuel prices in the world market.
Each franchise holder is entitled to a fuel subsidy amounting to P5,000 in 2018 and P20,514 for 2019, which will be given out quarterly.
Angara urged the PPP beneficiaries, who have yet to claim their fuel subsidy cards, to immediately proceed to the nearest LTFRB regional offices or the Land Transportation Office (LTO) on East Avenue in Quezon City for those in Metro Manila.
He said these offices resumed the distribution of PPP cards last January 7, as the LTFRB targets to complete the distribution of the remaining cards by March this year.
Angara noted that since November 20, last year, the LTFRB started accepting special power of attorneys (SPAs), along with other documents, for beneficiaries who cannot personally claim their cards.