Why are PH vehicle owners/drivers treated better than lawful taxis in T&T? They are not legally licensed to carry passengers for hire, they pay less license fees, they are inadequately insured (paying less premium) and now based on the Covid-19 restrictions, they can fill their vehicles with passengers while the H-vehicles are restricted to 50/65 per cent capacity.
To make matters worse the government has now passed laws whereby households traveling in the same vehicle must wear masks, “because it would be difficult for law enforcement to distinguish between PH vehicles and private vehicles so everybody must wear masks.” This is the easier way out.
Why were PH vehicles, although illegal, allowed to flourish in T&T? It was reported that H vehicles were not plying some routes, especially after hours and therefore residents were forced to use them.
Politically it was the easier decision to allow the illegal act to continue and Jack Warner, the Minister of Works and Transport at the time gave them a form of legality to continue operating without consequences. Would it not have been better to conduct a proper analysis on the reason that the PH drivers were not doing the correct thing and register their vehicle as H?
If it meant that anomalies existed at the Licensing Office that needed to be addressed then so be it.
To rub salt in the wound, the PH drivers are enjoying preferential treatment all round. No taxes, minimal licensing fees, if at all, minimal and inadequate insurance, if at all, no police character certificate, exposing passengers to possible harm, travelling with 100 per cent capacity during Covid-19 etc.
Robert A Ferreira