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Cebu News

Young wants inventory of impounded vehicles

- Rene U. Borromeo - The Philippine Star

CEBU, Philippines - Cebu City Vice Mayor Joy Augustus Young yesterday asked for an inventory of all impounded motorcycles and vehicles at the city’s impounding area, concerned that these might be used by officials for personal purposes.

Young received a letter from an anonymous writer questioning the legality of using impounded vehicles allegedly by the personnel of Councilor Edgardo Labella to support his political activities.

The letter cited three motorcycles - a Honda XRM 125, a Honda Beat and a blue Honda Wave – that were allegedly released from the impounding area after Labella’s request was approved by CITOM Chairman Sylvan “Jack” Jakosalem.

Young said that being a lawyer, Labella should know that using impounded vehicles before legally acquiring them is illegal.

“Misamot nga illegal kay ang report mao nga gigamit nila kining maong mga motorsiklo sa iyang mga sakop alang sa pa-molitika,” the vice mayor said. Labella had already announced he will challenge the reelection bid of Young in next year’s elections. (What makes it more illegal is these are used for politics.)

In a separate interview, Labella clarified that the motorcycles have yet to be released from the CITOM’s impounding area, pending the city’s move to have them registered with the Land Transportation Office (LTO).

Labella’s letter to Jakosalem stated that “these motorcycles will be used solely for official purposes by my staff.”

He further explained that being a member of the minority in the Cebu City Council, he is a member in all committees and it would mean more work for his personnel.

“Duna sila’y hangyo nga basin pwede gamiton kining mga impounded nga sakyanan kon ma-process na ang kompleto nga dokumento,” Labella said. (They asked if they could use the impounded vehicles when the documents are in order.)

Jakosalem, for his part, said he approved the request of Labella but this does not mean that it will be done before all papers are in order.

Jakosalem said he already brought up before the CITOM Board to allow the use, particularly for traffic enforcers, the vehicles unclaimed for more than six months.

Labella decided not to pursue the plan to allow his men to use the impounded vehicles even if these will not be used for political purposes.

“Dili na lang ko modayon total wala man usab g’yud na ma-release pa ang sakyanan,” he said. (I won’t push through with it, anyway, the vehicles have yet to be released.)

There are hundreds of vehicles impounded at the Block 27 of the North Reclamation Area and many of them deteriorated because the area does not have a roof.

Many of the vehicles’ owners failed and could no longer afford to pay the impounding fee.

State audit procedures allow the disposal of impounded vehicles through public auction if the owners fail to recover them for a period of six months, instead of allowing them to deteriorate and be useless.

Many of the impounded vehicles could not be released to their owners for lack of registration documents. - THE FREEMAN

CEBU CITY COUNCIL

CEBU CITY VICE MAYOR JOY AUGUSTUS YOUNG

CHAIRMAN SYLVAN

COUNCILOR EDGARDO LABELLA

HONDA BEAT

HONDA WAVE

IMPOUNDED

JAKOSALEM

LABELLA

VEHICLES

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