Tubigon Mayor William Jao on Friday said he ordered a crackdown against scalpers of fastcraft vessel tickets which are allegedly being sold in the municipality’s port by up to thrice the original price.
Jao issued the directive after a tourist complained against alleged scalpers in a Facebook post which has gone viral. The statement which was posted on May 16 gained 1,700 reactions and 4,000 shares as of Friday afternoon.
Netizen Crest GZ said he and his companions were supposed to buy tickets for a Cebu-bound StarCraft vessel at the Tubigon port on May 16 but were told that these were sold out. A few minutes later, an unidentified person offered them tickets which were being sold at P750 each, almost double the original price of P380.
According to Jao, he has recommended to the management of StarCraft to print the names of the passengers in the ticket upon issuance which is standard protocol for other shipping lines.
“Ang recommendation ayaw na issue og ticket og way pangan or else ipasira ka namo. E-recommend namo sa DOTR (Department of Transportation) na dili na mo byaheon kay maka guba man mo sa image sa Bohol,” said Jao.
Jao said he will continue to coordinate with law enforcement agencies and shipping line management to put an end to the scheme which he said could stain Bohol’s image as a tourist destination.
Based on authorities’ initial probe, the scheme is allegedly being carried out by ticket sellers of StarCraft and tricycle drivers at the Tubigon port.
Jao said authorities are preparing to file charges against the ticket sales officer who issued the tickets to the scalpers who remain unidentified.
“Sigurado gyud na na tunga sila sa ginansya anang tiketera,” said Jao.
In his Facenook post, Crest GZ said after the incident, he found out that the scalpers who are mostly tricycle drivers prey on those in a hurry to reach their places of destination.
The drivers are also allegedly in cahoots with some ticketing sales officers.
He said the P-380 tickets are being sold at 500, 700, 750 or 900 depending on the passenger’s apparent “desperation” to board the vessel. (A. Doydora)