LTFRB lost Grab, Uber accreditation papers

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board has (LTFRB) lost the accreditation papers of Grab and Uber, board member Aileen Lizada said on Friday, July 21.

Lizada made the statement in an interview on dzMM, and also confirmed it to Rappler on Friday.

"Pagpasok po namin diyan sa opisina namin, for the record, nawala po ang accreditation papers ng Uber and Grab (When we assumed office, for the record, the accreditation papers of Grab and Uber were missing)," she said in the radio interview.

Later, she told Rappler in a text message, "Ever since we assumed office, hinanap namin. Wala (Ever since we assumed office, we looked for it. Nothing)."

Lizada said former LTFRB executive director Roberto Cabrera supposedly had the accreditation papers of the transportation network companies but he denied having them. 

Cabrera reiterated this in a text message to Rappler on Friday.

“LTFRB BM Lizada is insinuating that my office lost the accreditation papers of Uber and Grab. For the record, the Office of the Executive Director (OED) processes the applications for accreditation. After they are approved, the OED no longer has any reason to keep the documents. They are passed on to the Board already for their signature,” Cabrera said.

Former LTFRB board member Ariel Inton, for his part, said the supposed loss of the documents is both unlikely and easy to remedy.

Inton said former LTFRB legal counsel Robert Peig worked with the current board during the members' "first few months" in office, so they can ask for his help. He added that the LTFRB can ask Grab and Uber for new copies of the accreditation requirements if necessary.

Grab's accreditation expired on July 3 while Uber's is set to expire by August. They have been sought for comment regarding the accreditation documents but have not replied as of posting.

Lizada spoke up about the supposed missing accreditation papers days after the LTFRB reportedly reached a "compromise" with Grab and Uber on the LTFRB's July 11 order that it would begin apprehending their colorum drivers starting July 26. This was achieved in a meeting initiated by several senators.

The TNCs have appealed the order. Pending the LTFRB's decision, their undocumented drivers can operate without fear of apprehension, a position slammed by public transportation groups.  – Rappler.com

Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers security, crime, and the city of Manila for Rappler. He was chosen as a Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs.

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