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PIA Press Release

2T taxi drivers train on courtesy, road safety for Asean Summit

Cebu City (17 October) -- About 2,000 taxi drivers in Cebu have already undergone training on basic courtesy and road safety as part of the continuing 'Visitors-Friendly Taxi Service' program in preparation for the coming 12th Asean Summit.

Tourism Usec. Phineas Alburo said they are targeting 4,000 taxi drivers to be trained in Cebu but they are still waiting for the release of the approved budget from the National Organizing Committee for the 12th Asean Summit. Earlier, it was said that a budget of P700T has been allocated for such training that will cover information materials, meals and honorarium for the participants.

For the meantime, the Technical Education Skills and Development Authority (TESDA) is initially pitching in their resources for the half-day crash course, Alburo noted.

As an incentive, the trained taxi drivers who will be issued a certificate of attendance that must be hang in their unit's rearview mirror are the only ones qualified to service customers including summit delegates billeted in the different hotels and resorts here, according to Alburo.

The tourism official also said they will ask SM and Ayala malls to allow only trained taxi drivers to service their customers.

Under the program, the taxi drivers will be oriented on values, proper hygiene, basic courtesy, road safety and cultural sensitivity or the "Do's and Don'ts" and they must be in suitable uniform while their units must be clean and in good condition.

The trained taxi drivers cannot also abuse their privilege by charging excessively, as the list of trained drivers are inputted in a database system and given to the security committee. Any unpropitious action on their part can easily be traced that is why we closely coordinating with the taxi operators group, Alburo emphasized.

Last August, a memorandum of understanding was signed among four government agencies and a taxi operators group to undertake the 'Visitors-Friendly Taxi Service' program. These agencies were the Department of Tourism (DOT-7), TESDA-7, Land Transportation and Franchising Regulatory Board (LTFRB-7) and the Land Transportation Office (LTO-7).

The LTO-7 will provide the guidelines on road safety and courtesy while the TESDA-7 through the Center for Industrial Technology and Enterprise is responsible for the sessions on work ethics.

Alburo said the training is a continuing program for taxi drivers even beyond the summit with the program to be replicated in other parts of the country. (PIA-Cebu/FCR) [top]

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