ZAMBOANGA CITY – A local transport group welcomed the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) decision to grant a fare increase to public utility jeepneys (PUJs) here.

“It is about time to increase the fare rate as the prices of gasoline and diesel are increasing,” Eduardo Mingala, president of the Federation of Land Transportation of Zamboanga (Feltranz), said in a statement.

Feltranz is composed of 48 associations of jeepney operators and drivers based in the city. The LTFRB approved a fare rate increase for PUJs that will take effect on Oct. 3.

In a separate statement Thursday, LTFRB-Zamboanga Peninsula hearing officer Jason Tan said the new fare rate for PUJs is PHP12 for the first four kilometers and an additional PHP1.80 per succeeding kilometer.

The previous fare rate for the first four kilometers was PHP11 and an additional PHP1.50 per subsequent kilometer. For taxis, Tan said the flagdown rate would be PHP45 from the previous PHP40.

The fare for regular provincial buses will also go up to PHP11 for the first five kilometers and an additional PHP1.90 per succeeding kilometer.

Tan advised the PUJ operators and drivers to secure copies of the new fare matrix from the LTFRB office for them to impose the new fare rate.

“We started the distribution of the fare matrix this week,” he said. (PNA)