UNTAT BIYAHE: The transport strike in Bacolod City begins | NEWS FROM SUGARLANDIA

BACOLOD CITY – Four hours after the transport strike started around 7 a.m., militants reported public transport paralysis of around 70 to 80 percent here and up to 90 percent in the province.

The police, however, gave a very low paralysis estimate.

Drivers are protesting the continuous increase in oil prices and are demanding President Noynoy to regulate prices or, at the very least, temporarily suspend the Value Added Tax on petroleum products.

UNDOC and allied organizations of the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan are also calling for the repeal of the Downstream Oil Industry Deregulation Act and the nationalization of the oil industry.

Local businessmen, some of whom had earlier pledged full support for the strike, are also calling for government’s intervention on the wide price difference in pump prices in Negros Occidental compared to those in other provinces.


NO MORE BEINTE Y SINGKO | Rice at the Burgos Public Market in Bacolod City | As fuel prices rise, the prices of basic commodities are rising, too | Photo by Julius D. Mariveles

Christian Tuayon of Bayan said around 80 percent of public utility jeepneys and buses in the northern part of Bacolod and the province have ceased to ply their routes based on their observation at the junction of the BS Aquino Drive and Lacson Street where Bayan has set up a rally center.

Bayan Muna’s Alejandro Deoma, meanwhile, said up to 99 percent of public jeepneys plying out-of-town routes in the southern part of the province have stayed off the roads.

But the city’s traffic chief, Chief Insp. Luisito Acebuche, said there is only 20 percent paralysis in the city proper.

Additional personnel have been deployed in the streets to prevent striking drivers from blocking roads, he added.

The strike is led by the United Negros Drivers and Operators Center (UNDOC), which claims membership of almost all drivers’ organizations plying out-town routes.

Most the organizations of jeepney drivers in the city, on the other hand, belong to the Federation of Bacolod City Drivers Associations (FEBACDA) that is affiliated with the 1-Utak partylist.

FEBACDA president Elizabeth Katalbas had earlier said that they are not joining the strike.

While officials of the Metro Bacolod Chamber of Commerce and Industry have expressed support for the two-day strike, no commercial establishments have yet been seen closing down for the day.

More updates on the transport strike later today.



About Hannah|JuliusMariveles

English instructor and broadcast journalist


3 thoughts on “UNTAT BIYAHE: The transport strike in Bacolod City begins | NEWS FROM SUGARLANDIA

  1. dugay na ni nga article but it might be related to this. Kung indi, never mind na lang. hehe.


    Posted by Cho Hakkai | May 16, 2011, 11:23 am
    May 17, 2011
    By: Northern Negros Alliance for Human Rights Advocates

    The Northern Negros Alliance for Human Rights Advocates (NNAHRA) in Negros Occidental based in Escalante City together with the Transport sector- United Negros Drivers Operators Center (Undoc) in Bacolod City is having a two days transport strike that began yesterday until today May 17, 2011. This mass action is aimed to register the strong opposition of the peopleaction against the unjust higher fuel prices in Negros Occidental.
    The unabated oil petroleum productsprice hike severely affected the lives of the people in Negros especially the poor people. Indeed, the transport and fishing sector continue to carry the heavy burden of this unjust and oppressive highoil prices imposed by the big oil companies.According to Fr. Gilbert Billena, O.Carm, the chairperson of NNAHRA, “The people are now into dire situation due to unabated fuel prices”. He also said that this situation does not favour the poor people and business sector and it is a clear oppression of the big oil companies against the struggling people through the continuing imposition of overpriced petroleum products in Negros.
    The Northern Negros Alliance for Human Rights Advocates also strongly opposed President Aquino’s stance on the escalating oil prices in the country. The “PantawidPasada” of P-NOY administration for the transport operators is not the genuine solution to this problem. It seems that the administration of P-NOY is heartless to the plea of the transport and fishing sector by conniving with the interest of the big oil companies. Hence, through this two days transport strike, the multi-sectoral organizations in Northern Negros calls for the demand to the cancellation of the Oil Deregulation Law that causes the unabated oil hike price and the revocation of the 12% Expanded Value Added tax on oil petroleum products and thorough investigation about the higher price difference of oil products in Negros Occidental.
    NNAHRA chairperson estimated that the first day of transport strike was participated by 80% of the public transport sector in Escalante and 90% in Toboso area. On the second of day of transport strike the public transportation in the town of Toboso and Escalante City, Negros Occidental was 95% paralyzed. It was well participated by the jeepney and tricycle operators. The Ceres Bus operation from Escalante going to Bacolod City was fully paralyed at 8:00 in the morning until afternoon due to the active persuasion of the striking transport operators to the commuters. The transport strike culminated with the march rally that began at 1:00 in the afternoon participated by 700 people from different areas in Escalante City and followed by the two hours program held in the strike center at Escalante City rotonda and ended at 4:00 p.m with the noise barrage.
    Fr. Gilbert Billena
    Cell No: 09104166446
    Email: northernnegros_hra@yahoo.com

    Posted by Gilbert | May 17, 2011, 2:17 pm

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