Saturday, October 6, 2012

Qualified Filipino Bus Drivers

Department of Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz sees bus passengers all over Zamboanga del Norte benefiting much from safe bus travel as the DOLE, through its attached agency, the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), has already certified 89 bus drivers in the region as competent.

"This move will also benefit the region's bus drivers and conductors, as their being certified competent will boost professionalism in the bus transport sector, eventually benefiting other sectors of the economy, such as the tourism sector," said Baldoz in a media statement.

The labor and employment chief made the statement during her brief visit last week to the famous Shrine City of Dapitan, the national hero Jose Rizal's place of exile in Zamboanga del Norte.

During the visit, Baldoz handed out the Certificates of Competency or NC III of the 89 bus drivers assessed and certified as such by the TESDA. She also inducted the officials of the province's Industry Tripartite Council-Bus Transport sector.

The induction formally established and set into action the ITC as a DOLE partner in fostering labor-management cooperation on addressing concerns and challenges confronting the province's bus transport sector.

It also paves the way for the smooth implementation in Zamboanga del Norte of D.O. 118-12, Series of 2012, the Rules and Regulations Governing the Employment and Working Conditions of Drivers and Conductors in the Public Utility Bus Transport Industry, which will redound to the benefit of bus drivers and conductors and ensure their safety as well as the safety of bus passengers.

"I welcome the establishment of the ITC in the Bus Transport sector in the Zamboanga Peninsula. I hope you will truly live up to your pledge to use the ITC as a mechanism to resolve the problems in your industry which you alone can address because you are familiar with these problems, promote labor-management cooperation and self-governance, and raise productivity and competitiveness," Baldoz said.

"On the other hand, the training, assessment, and certification of the region's bus drivers will lead to a professional corps of drivers in the bus transport sector that could be a boon to health and safety which in turn will attract more passengers, including tourists," she added.

TESDA Regional Director Lorenzo Macapili informed the Secretary that the TESDA had assessed 187 bus drivers in compliance with D.O. 118-12, but only 89 had passed and been certified.

"We will soon train those bus drivers who did not pass the assessment," he assured Baldoz.

The distribution of the NC III certificates and the induction of the ITC-Bus Transport officers were the culmination of the DOLE Regional Office No. 9's conduct of a two-day learning session on the DOLE's occupational safety and health program held for stakeholders of the Zamboanga Peninsula bus transport industry.

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