Legislator asks Grab to enjoin passengers in fund-raising

 

Rep. Salvador B. Belaro Jr., 1Ang Edukasyon Partylist, lauded Gran Philippines for putting up a P100,000 bounty for the arrest of the killers of its model driver, Gerardo “Junjie” Maquidato Jr., who was fatally shot October 27 and his vehicle stolen by a man who posed as passenger.

 

Belaro also asked Grab to enjoin its passengers in a fund-raising for the slain driver’s family, who will have to henceforth live without a breadwinner.

 

“Grab can take that move one step further. They can, and I think they should, let Grab passengers help increase that bounty. Frequent Grab passengers would be willing to contribute to that bounty and to a fund for the immediate family of Junjie Maquidato to help them weather at least the financial difficulties of losing their provider,” he said.

 

The holidays honoring the dearly departed and come December would be particularly difficult for the Maquidato family. Aside from our prayers, some Grab passengers would be willing, in the spirit of bayanihan, to manifest their sympathies with the welfare fund and the bounty for Maquidato’s murderers.

 

Safety of Grab drivers also means safety of their passengers.

 

With our collective vigilance, technology, and effective police work, the murderers will be brought to justice, Belaro noted.

 

Model driver

 

Last year, Grab partner-driver Gerardo “Junjie” Maquidato Jr. made waves when he did not accept payment from a sick passenger.

Grab Philippines then recognized him for his deed, naming him as one of the driver awardees.

The Philippine Star reported that according to the initial police report, a witness heard gunshots at around 7:50 p.m. last Oct. 27.

Lifeless Maquidato was then seen shoved out of the silver Toyota Innova with plate number YV 7109 along Bonanza St. in Pasay City.

He sustained a gunshot wound to the back of his head. The slug exited through his left eye.

He was believed to be killed by a lone suspect who booked and rode as a regular passenger. The killer fled toward Cesna St. using the victim’s vehicle. Police are eyeing at initially carnapping as the motive.

Grab condemned the death of Maquidato, whom they called as “one of our best driver-partners.”

“Grab is one with authorities in making sure that justice will be served and perpetrators will be put behind bars,” the ride-sharing company said in a statement Sunday.

But Grab refused to name Maquidato’s last passenger so as not to jeopardize an ongoing police investigation.

The company Grab has reported six confirmed cases of carnapping incidents involving vehicles under their platforms.

“We are currently discussing tech solutions that would decrease, if not completely hamper, the chances of carnapping incidents involving Transport Network Vehicle Services,” it said.

During his Facebook Live, Grab country head Brian Cu announced that the company is offering a P100 ,000 reward to anyone who captures the killers of Maquidato.

“I think it’s within our responsibility to do whatever we can to catch the perpetrators of this crime,” Cu said in a mix of English and Filipino.

The company asked for the support of its passengers as it takes additional measures to prevent the incident from happening again.

“We prioritize the safety of our driver-partners as much as we do for our passengers... Before starting the trip, our driver-partners may ask you to show a personal identification card to verify your identity especially during night shift hours,” Grab said.

Family

Cu, during his Facebook Live, said he talked to the family of the slain Grab driver.

When I talked to his wife, she said her only wish was to bring justice to Sir Gerardo and catch the coward who killed him,” he said.

Maquidato’s nephew, Rex Mer Solitario, posted online about his uncle’s death.

He is working decently but you killed him. You didn’t even pity him and his family. He has four children. You took their father’s life too soon,” Solitario said on Facebook.

Maquidato went viral last August 2016 for helping a passenger undergoing dialysis.

A certain Divine Lacto Ornum booked a GrabCar for her sister, Prima, who was on her way to Quezon City to pick up bags of blood for her dialysis.

Maquidato picked her up but did not charge his passenger out of kindness.

Grab Philippines said Prima has passed away but her relatives had the chance to thank Maquidato in person during his awarding.

After Maquidato’s death, Divine recalled the kindness of the Grab driver, who kept in touch with her family after the post when viral.

 

She shared that Maquidato gave them the cash reward he received from Grab, adding she did not want to take the money but the driver insisted. I hoped that he would be blessed because he is really kind-hearted. I am always thankful that he was the one who picked up my sister,” she said. #

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