It’s Finger-pointing Time Again
By Apolinario Villalobos
With the latest accident that involved a Don Mariano bus, all fingers pointed to the bus driver. For criminal liability, he is guilty, of course. But can’t investigators from agencies concerned conduct a deeper investigation to really find out the real cause? An information has been gathered that the driver had barely rested for three hours before he hit the road again. Why? His colleagues in the company leaked to the media that the new wage policy has not been implemented in their case. According to the source of the information, they are required to raise Php12,000.00 as their “quota” or “boundary” for their company/operator. From the excess of that amount, the driver gets 10%, the conductor 9%, and the other prorated shares go to the rest of the crew. Their shares have yet to be deducted with SSS and other mandatory contributions. To be able to do this, the driver and the conductor must be on the road for more than 12 hours. Are the agencies concerned looking into these allegations?
It has been discovered also that the Don Mariano Bus company have several franchises for their buses. In other words, what we believe to be a one time issuance franchise for each transport company is never done. The LTFRB “distributes” the franchises according to the routes being served by the buses. If this is the case, how can the erring company feel the pressure of franchise suspension as penalty when its other buses not involved in the accident still happily ply the other routes? Why not issue the franchise per company? They must come up with an effective system to patch up this glaring loophole in the way franchises are issued.
Still on the Don Mariano Bus accident, it has been alleged that the driver drove over a puddle of water which could have perhaps made him lose control resulting from the sliding effect. What? A puddle of water on the skyway? The water is supposed to flow down. Why did it stay on an elevated surface such as the skyway? Something must be wrong with the way such structure was designed. Why not include the people behind such project in the investigation? How about the bus company or operator? Their “willingness” to shoulder the medical, hospital and other expenses of the survivors and those who were not lucky must not free them from reliability. In this case, the fact is that the company did not implement the new wage policy covering the drivers and conductors. As usual, there are mouthfuls of promises again that something will be done… It is a never ending promise that seems to be the standard statement of the government representatives.
Can we expect the wheel of justice to roll here? or will the case be relegated again, just like the rest, to the records that got stacked in the filing cabinet, accumulating dust? My guess is good as yours…