The Land Transportation and Franchising Regulatory Board (LTFRB) on Wednesday warned the public against using the Bookme Transport Lite mobile app and said that transport network vehicle services (TNVS) are only authorized to operate in areas under general community quarantine (GCQ).
In a Facebook post, the LTFRB said an investigation found that Bookme was operating without authorization in different parts of the National Capital Region, even in areas under modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ).
“Sa masusing pagsisiyasat sa naturang application, nagbibigay ito ng hatid sa mga pasahero at sa mga gustong magpa-deliver ng mga pangangailangan at iba pang serbisyo tulad ng gupit, masahe para sa app user (After a thorough review of the application, it was found that it provides transportation, delivery and other services such as haircuts, massages for app users),” the LTFRB said.
It said that under LTFRB memorandum circular 2020-018, TNVS may only operate with a valid certificate of public convenience (CPC) and provisional authority (PA) and currently only in areas under GCQ.
The possible resumption of operations of TNVS in MECQ areas, it said, would only occur following authorization from the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID).
“Para sa publiko, huwag tangkilikin ang serbisyo ng mga PUVs (public utility vehicles) na hindi pa awtorisado ng LTFRB (For the public, do not patronize PUVs that are unauthorized by the LTFRB),” the LTFRB said.
It added that the LTFRB will not hesitate in meting out the appropriate penalties against TNVS operators found to be operating illegally against the guidelines of the IATF-EID and joint administrative order 2014-01.
Bookme, in a post on its Facebook page, said that the Hong Kong based company only provides a “free marketplace” and does not take a commission from any transactions, unlike TNVS companies such as Grab.
It said that those providing transportation services through their app must have valid TNVS authorization, and if not, “they do it on their own risk.” (PNA)