Updated 19:54 PM PHT Fri, August 26, 2016
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) – The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) on Thrusday gave ride-hailing service Grab five days to explain why it should not have its franchise revoked after an alleged harassment incident that trended online.
Thousands of netizens liked, shared and commented on the Facebook post about a Grab driver, identified as Mark Rolyn Bonifacio Bernardez, who supposedly threatened his passenger with a gun on Tuesday night.
The passenger, who refused to be identified for security reasons, said Bernardez cancelled his trip after he had told Bernardez to take a different route from Bonifacio Global City in Taguig City to Taft Avenue in Manila.
LTFRB Memorandum Circular 2015-018 states that Transportation Network Vehicle Service (TNVS) drivers cannot use "any route other than the most direct route (to a destination) without the express consent of the passenger."
The passenger said Bernardez then threw a fit and pulled out a gun from the footwell of the Toyota Vios that he was driving before ordering the passenger to get out of the car.
Grab Philippines head Brian Cu said in a statement on Wednesday that Bernardez has been suspended and was being investigated by the company.
"Should the driver involved or any other driver for that matter, be found guilty of compromising the safety of Grab rides, he will be permanently banned from the system and his records will be submitted to the proper authorities for due process," Cu said. "Should he be found innocent, the company will stand by him and work together towards rebuilding his integrity together."
Cu also said the company will cooperate with the authorities should there be an investigation and continues to encourage passengers to use social media to report complaints.
The passenger told CNN Philippines on Friday that he is happy with what is being done in response to his Facebook post.
"I'm glad Grab and LTFRB is doing something about it," the passenger said. "I'm just afraid of what the driver can do or might do to me."
The LTFRB also invited Grab and the driver to a hearing on Sept. 6.