DILG Secretary Eduardo M. Año (File photo)

MANILA – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Tuesday said a total of 617,806 qualified tricycle drivers nationwide are set to receive their fuel cash subsidy under the "Pantawid Pasada Program for Tricycle Drivers” to help ease their burden brought about by soaring pump prices and the pandemic.

DILG Secretary Eduardo M. Año said the fuel subsidy will be disbursed by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) either through the beneficiaries’ e-wallet accounts or branches of the Landbank of the Philippines, or off-site payout by the local government units (LGUs).

Inaasahan namin na sa pamamagitan ng fuel subsidy na ito, maiibsan kahit paano ang paghihirap ng mga tricycle drivers dulot ng sunod-sunod na pagtaas ng presyo ng krudo at paghina ng biyahe dahil sa Covid-19 pandemic. Ito ang paraan ng pamahalaan para ipamalas ang kanyang pagmamalasakit sa ating mga tricycle drivers (We expect that through this fuel subsidy, the burden of tricycle drivers due to consecutive oil price hikes and fewer trips due to the Covid-19 pandemic will be eased. This is the government's way of showing compassion towards our tricycle drivers),” Año said in a news release.

Of the total number of tricycle drivers-beneficiaries, Año said 67,536 are from Region 1; 31,638 from Region 2; 83,621 in Region 3; 162,500 in Calabarzon; 30,340 in Mimaropa; 35,339 in Region 5; 59,280 in Region 6; 11,685 in Region 7; 6,448 in Region 8; 9,869 in Region 9; 8,760 in Region 10; 8,793 in Region 11; 21,685 in Region 12; 6,869 in Caraga; 68,165 in National Capital Region; 5,040 in Cordillera Administrative Region; and 238 in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).

He said the subsidy shall be distributed in three batches. The first batch is for the 539,395 trike drivers who were able to provide an e-wallet account while the second batch is for the 73,233 drivers who will avail of the over-the-counter (OTC) transactions at the Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) branch nearest them.

Finally, the third batch is for the 5,178 drivers who will avail of on-site payout at the LGUs.

Lahat ng nasa masterlist ng qualified tricycle drivers ay makakatanggap ng fuel subsidy, Hintayin na lang po natin ang abiso ng LTFRB (Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board) para sa mga detalye at karagdagang impormasyon (All those who are included in the masterlist of qualified tricycle drivers will receive fuel subsidy. Let's just wait for the LTFRB's advisory regarding the details and additional information),” he said.

Earlier, the DILG issued Memorandum Circular 2022-047 tasking LGUs to produce and submit to the DILG a validated list of tricycle drivers; tricycle franchisees; addresses; electronic wallet accounts; and a number of operating tricycles, and other details within their respective jurisdictions.

The list must be certified correct by the Head of the Tricycle Franchising Board and the head of the local Tricycle Operators and Drivers Association (TODA) as well as the concerned city or municipal mayors and vice-mayors.

Año said some 766,590 trike drivers had their names submitted for inclusion in the masterlist. Upon validation, however, 148,784 trike drivers nationwide were disqualified due to a lack of means of verification (MOVs), such as driver's license numbers, incomplete e-wallet information, or names submitted after the deadline.

Nagkaroon ng validation at verification para siguraduhin na ang makatatanggap ng fuel subsidy ay ang mga lehitimong namamasada na may prangkisa at hindi colorum, may lisensya, at nakapag-submit ng mga requirements sa deadline na ibinigay ng pamahalaan (A validation and verification process has been undertaken to ensure that those who are entitled to the fuel subsidy are legitimate drivers who have franchises and licenses and are not colorum. These beneficiaries have submitted the requirements before the deadline given by the government),” he said.

The DILG chief also urged city and municipal mayors to set up a Pantawid Pasada Assistance and Complaint Desk or hotline to address concerns and complaints from the beneficiaries on the list and availment of the said fuel subsidy. (PR)