See - QC court halts Uber, GrabCar | ABS-CBN News
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MANILA (3rd UPDATE) – The Quezon City Regional Trial Court (RTC) has temporarily stopped the operations of app-based transportation service Uber and GrabCar in the country.
In a nine-page order signed by Judge Santiago Arenas, a 20-day temporary restraining order (TRO) was issued against the implementation of policies related to the operations of Transportation Network Vehicle Service (TNVS), which include online private vehicle booking services such as Uber and GrabCar.
The decision said that the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) are restrained from the "implementation and enforcement of DOTC Department Order No. 2015-11, LTFRB Memorandum Circulars Nos. 2015-15, 2015-16, 2015-17 and 2015-18 and other issuances relative thereto which include the stopping of accepting, processing, and approving of applications of motor vehicles as public utility vehicles accredited and belonging to TNVS" for a period of 20 days.
The court granted the petition of Angat Tsuper Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Operator ng Pilipinas Genuine Organization Transport Coalition (Stop & Go Transport Coalition), which claimed that the app-based transport companies are operating illegally due to the lack of a certificate of public convenience (CPC).
Stop & Go Transport president Jun Magno also said TNVS is negatively affecting the businesses of other public utility vehicles.
“Napakalaking epekto nito sa hanapbuhay ng mga miyembro namin na taxi driver at UV Express. Itong Uber at Grab, wala naman itong franchise,” he told dzMM.
One of the orders covered by the TRO, DOTC Department Order No. 2015-11, aims "to encourage innovation across all forms of public land transportation order to increase mobility on major thoroughfares, boost travel times, improve the quality, sustainability and reliability of public transport services, and respond to the needs of the modern commuter."
Aside from allowing TNVS, the department order also allows the operation of bus rapid transit, airport buses, and premium taxis.
According to Magno, it is up to the DOTC if it needs to seek clarification from the court, as the group only opposes the operations of the app-based services.
A hearing on Stop & Go's petition to permanently stop the operations of Uber and GrabCar is set on December 8.
The LTFRB approved this year the accreditation of both Uber and GrabCar.
Under LTFRB's guidelines, these services are required to obtain a certificate of public convenience for every vehicle to ensure accountability.
In a statement, GrabTaxi Philippines said it has yet to receive the court order.
"We haven't received a memo from the RTC regarding the TRO but we're currently coordinating with the LTFRB and our lawyers for our next steps,” the firm said.
GrabCar is currently available in Metro Manila, while GrabTaxi provides services in Metro Manila, Cebu, Davao, Iloilo, Bacolod and Baguio.
GrabTaxi is currently the largest transport app in Southeast Asia, and is available in 22 cities across six countries.
Uber, meanwhile, said it is now studying the implications of the court decision.
"Uber is aware of a decision issued earlier today by the Quezon City Regional Trial Court and is studying the implications of this decision upon Transport Network Vehicle Services performed by Uber partners. Uber was not a party to the proceedings that resulted in the court's decision and plans to coordinate closely with the DOTC and LTFRB," Uber said in a statement.
"Uber remains 100 percent committed to serving Filipino commuters and has confidence that the DOTC and LTFRB will continue working productively with Uber and other industry participants to issue all necessary permits under the prevailing regulations and assure the smooth operation of Transport Network Vehicle Services in Metro Manila and elsewhere in the Philippines," it added.
Uber has operations in more than 60 countries worldwide.
-- With a report from Zhander Cayabyab, dzMM
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