Senate Majority Leader Alan Peter Cayetano

Senate Majority Leader Alan Peter Cayetano

MANILA (Mabuhay) – Senate Majority Leader Alan Peter Cayetano on Tuesday threatened to block the 2016 budget of the Land Transportation Office if it will not declare a moratorium on the “No Plate, No Travel” policy.

“We remind the LTO that it collected more than P17.16 billion in 2013, and P11 billion collected from Road User’s Tax,” Cayetano said in a statement.

“The failure of DOTC (Department of Transportation and Communications) and LTO to serve their mandated tasks is inexcusable and unacceptable, yet they have the temerity to invoke the law penalizing victims of their inefficiency,” he added.

The senator reiterated his call for a 30-day moratorium on the implementation of the LTO policy.

Walang mawawala sa LTO at sa gobyerno kung sa loob ng 30 araw ‘wag muna ipatupad ang no plate no travel policy. Ito ay habang inaantay ang supply ng plaka at nirerepaso ang systema ng pag-rehistro at pag-kuha ng plaka,” Cayetano said.

“Threatening vehicle owners with stiff penalties for a problem LTO created is grossly unfair and must stop. At the same time, a moratorium will allow the LTO enough time to set its house in order by fully servicing backlogs of vehicle owners and car dealers,” he added.

Cayetano filed Senate Resolution 1288 to investigate the issues surrounding the unavailability of plate numbers and driver’s licenses.

“Government agencies’ tact of causing inconvenience and punishing the public for their inefficiency and incompetence must stop,” he said.

P10,000 fine

Under the new LTO policy, the owner of an unregistered vehicle must pay a fine of P10,000. Another P1,000 fine will also be meted out against those who will be caught driving the unregistered vehicle.

If a car owner or driver is able to present a Certificate of Registration and an Official Receipt (OR) proving the vehicle is duly registered, he will still be fined of P5,000 for failing to affix the plate number on the car.

LTO earlier said it has never been remiss in issuing plate numbers to newly registered vehicles.

Para sa amin, lahat po ng nagrerehistro ngayon ay nabibigyan po ng plaka. I think, kahit kausapin ninyo ang mga [car] dealer, aminado na sila na kapag pinasok ang dokumento sa LTO, within seven days ay makukuha niyo na po ang OR (official receipt) ninyo, ang CR (certificate of registration) ninyo at yung plaka ninyo,” LTO chief Aljun Tan said in an earlier interview.

Industry stakeholders, however, denied LTO’s claim.

“They couldn’t process any registrations because the system was not up, and naturally, it will create a backlog. The backlog started last year from their end. They just have a [small] number of people to work on the huge volume of plates, registrations from dealerships nationwide,” Richie Javier, general manager of Ford Global City and Ford Manila, said. (MNS)