Pantawid Pasada: Gov't bares exact amount of fuel assistance

It can be remembered that President Benigno Aquino III on April 1st signed EO 32 that institutes the Public Transport Assistance Program, commonly known as “Pantawid Pasada” to subsidize a portion of the average consumption of jeepney and tricycle drivers amid escalating fuel costs.

How much will the beneficiaries receive? And for how long?

Three government agencies, namely the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC), Department of Finance (DOF), and the Department of Energy (DOE), were jointly authorized, as per EO 32, to determine the monthly funding requirement of “Pantawid Pasada”.

Today, the government through the DOE announced the exact amount of fuel assistance to be reflected on the smart cards.

The DOE reportedly said that at least 240,000 jeepney drivers will receive P1,050 each (P35 per day), while almost 1 million tricycle drivers will get P150 fuel subsidy each (P5 per day).

The government is expected to start releasing fuel assistance on May 1, Labor day.

Malacanang, meanwhile, said it is confident that it can sustain the assistance program for vulnerable sectors of the society in the next couple of months hoping that the oil crisis subsides soon.

While saying that nobody can predict how long the Libya situation would last causing the instability in fuel prices, Secretary Ramon Carandang said in a press conference Thursday that the Aquino government is prepared to help vulnerable sectors in the next two months from unabated increase in petroleum prices.

“I think we have resources for the next two months to sustain these things. Beyond that it’s difficult to say,” Carandang reportedly said.