MANILA – Senator Alan Peter Cayetano posted on his Facebook page the message “No Moratorium, No Budget,” an apparent word pun on the Land Transportation Office’s (LTO) “No Plate, No Travel” policy.
Cayetano further explained his message, saying that he will block the LTO’s budget for 2016 and will push for zero allocation if the government agency does not suspend its ‘No Plate, No Travel’ policy. He also wanted the agency to improve its car-registration system and other services to the public.
“Walang mawawala sa LTO at sa gobyerno kung sa loob ng 30 araw ay huwag munang ipatupad and ‘No Plate, No Travel’ policy.’ Ito ay habang inaantay ang supply ng plaka at nirerepaso and sistema ng pagrehistro at pagkuha ng plaka,” he said.
(There will be no loss on the part of the LTO and the government if the ‘No Plate, No Travel’ policy will be suspended in a span of 30 days. This [should be implemented] while waiting for the supply of plates and while the registration process is still being organized.)
The LTO had been criticized when it imposed the said policy as vehicle owners complained buying cars that did not have registered plates.
Cayetano asserted that the motorists should not be burdened in registering their plates. He said that the agency must suspend the policy for 30 days so that the public could secure their plates.
The LTO, for their part, maintained that car plates were actually already available and car dealers were just not claiming them.
Regarding their policy, the LTO reasoned that it was mandated by the law and they were just implementing it.
“Ipinapatupad lang po namin ang batas. Wala naman po kaming binabago dito. Ang sinasabi lang ng batas, kapag bumili ka ng auto, i-rehistro mo within 7 days. Ipinapatupad lang namin ‘to,” LTO spokesperson Jason Salvador said in a radio interview.
(We are just implementing the law. We are not changing anything about it. What the law says is that when you buy an auto, you have to register it within 7 days. We are just implementing this.)
Salvador, however, admitted that they indeed had lapses in releasing plates before but claimed that the backlogs decreased when the new license plates were issued.
“Sa sobrang sigurado namin na wala kaming problema sa pagrerehistro, hinahamon na namin sila. Kayo na mismo ang pumunta sa amin kung hindi maaasikaso ng dealer niyo,” he said, stating that they can now issue plates in just a week.
(Since we are more than sure that we have no problem with the registration, we are now challenging them. You, yourselves approach us if your dealer cannot process [your plates].)