Grab’s Cu slams Nograles for saying they should pay P15B fines for ‘overcharging’

Published November 26, 2019, 9:39 PM

by Martin Sadongdong & Antonio Colina

By Ben Rosario and Alexandria Dennise San Juan

Ride-sharing company Grab Philippines president Brian Cu hit back at Puwersa ng Bayaning Atleta partylist Representative Jericho Nograles who said the firm should be slapped by transport regulators with P15 billion in fines for ‘overcharging’ three million of its users.

FILE PHOTO: People wait for the start of Grab's fifth anniversary news conference in Singapore June 6, 2017. REUTERS/Edgar Su/ MANILA BULLETIN
(REUTERS / Edgar Su / FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

In a statement issued Tuesday, Grab maintained that it did not overcharge its riders and has no liability to pay any fine contrary to Nograles’ claim.

Grab explained that its fares were well within the fare matrix of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Body (LTFRB), though the Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) imposed a fine of P5 million based on lower fares.

Cu chided the partylist lawmaker for claiming the LTFRB has given Grab mere a slap on the wrist with P23.45 million in fines for allegedly overcharging “three million riders.”

He pointed out that the penalties imposable by the LTFRB through a Joint Administrative Order (JAO) 2014-01 should not be confused with the penalty imposed by the PCC. Grab’s fares continue to comply with the LTFRB fare matrix, and therefore there is absolutely no basis to apply the provisions of JAO 2014-01 cited by Rep. Nograles.

In a press statement on Monday, Nograles said that what Grab Philippines deserves is a P15 billion fine for declaring that it overcharged three million riders from February to May 2019.

“Grab made a direct admission of three million offenses and under the JAO 2014-01, each offense merits a fine of P5,000. Therefore, Grab should be liable for P15 billion worth of fines,” Nograles said.

Contrary to this, Cu emphasized that it has not made any form of admission of the alleged three million offenses of overcharging.

“What Grab said in a press conference last November 22 was there is no overcharging, and that there are around three million passengers that would receive the payment of P5.05 million in total fines as ordered by the PCC,” Cu said.

“We complied with our regulator but in the interest of showing good faith, we will comply with the PCC, although clearly we could have filed a motion for reconsideration or appealed to a higher authority, which we did not since we want to focus on our business instead,” he added.

Cu said Nograles’s statements are “incorrect, misleading, irresponsible, and will only hurt the morale of drivers who only want to make a decent living by serving the riding public…. His antics will not benefit the riding public and the drivers. Why he continues to do so remains a mystery,” Cu said further.

The lawmaker, he added, has reasons for his action that “he alone knows.”

 
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Grab’s Cu slams Nograles for saying they should pay P15B fines for ‘overcharging’

Published November 26, 2019, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Ben Rosario and Alexandria Dennise San Juan

Ride-sharing company Grab Philippines president Brian Cu hit back at Puwersa ng Bayaning Atleta partylist Representative Jericho Nograles who said the firm should be slapped by transport regulators with P15 billion in fines for ‘overcharging’ three million of its users.

FILE PHOTO: People wait for the start of Grab's fifth anniversary news conference in Singapore June 6, 2017. REUTERS/Edgar Su/ MANILA BULLETIN
(REUTERS / Edgar Su / FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

In a statement issued Tuesday, Grab maintained that it did not overcharge its riders and has no liability to pay any fine contrary to Nograles’ claim.

Grab explained that its fares were well within the fare matrix of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Body (LTFRB), though the Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) imposed a fine of P5 million based on lower fares.

Cu chided the partylist lawmaker for claiming the LTFRB has given Grab mere a slap on the wrist with P23.45 million in fines for allegedly overcharging “three million riders.”

He pointed out that the penalties imposable by the LTFRB through a Joint Administrative Order (JAO) 2014-01 should not be confused with the penalty imposed by the PCC. Grab’s fares continue to comply with the LTFRB fare matrix, and therefore there is absolutely no basis to apply the provisions of JAO 2014-01 cited by Rep. Nograles.

In a press statement on Monday, Nograles said that what Grab Philippines deserves is a P15 billion fine for declaring that it overcharged three million riders from February to May 2019.

“Grab made a direct admission of three million offenses and under the JAO 2014-01, each offense merits a fine of P5,000. Therefore, Grab should be liable for P15 billion worth of fines,” Nograles said.

Contrary to this, Cu emphasized that it has not made any form of admission of the alleged three million offenses of overcharging.

“What Grab said in a press conference last November 22 was there is no overcharging, and that there are around three million passengers that would receive the payment of P5.05 million in total fines as ordered by the PCC,” Cu said.

“We complied with our regulator but in the interest of showing good faith, we will comply with the PCC, although clearly we could have filed a motion for reconsideration or appealed to a higher authority, which we did not since we want to focus on our business instead,” he added.

Cu said Nograles’s statements are “incorrect, misleading, irresponsible, and will only hurt the morale of drivers who only want to make a decent living by serving the riding public…. His antics will not benefit the riding public and the drivers. Why he continues to do so remains a mystery,” Cu said further.

The lawmaker, he added, has reasons for his action that “he alone knows.”

 
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