LTO mulls suspension of fees for undelivered plates
Robertzon Ramirez (The Philippine Star) - January 4, 2016 - 9:00am

MANILA, Philippines - New Land Transportation Office (LTO) director Roberto Cabrera is thinking of suspending the collection of the P50 fee for registration stickers.   

He is also considering delaying payment of the fees until license plates are made available.

“I hope that’s still possible,” he said over radio station dzMM. “The wonderful thing about it is that we can have a  win-win solution. We can delay the payment until delivery is made.” 

However, he learned during his last meeting with some LTO officials that the delivery of stickers was not as problematic as those of driver’s licenses and car plates, Cabrera said.

Cabrera took his oath of office before Transportation and Communications Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya yesterday morning.

He was a practicing lawyer before he joined the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) as executive director in February 2013.

In November, Abaya asked him if he would be willing to replace LTO director Alfonso Tan Jr. who “voluntarily resigned” last November. 

 “I said I’ll be here, I’ll be ready,” he said. “So it pushed through last December.” 

Cabrera vowed to resolve the legal challenges before the Commission on Audit (COA) and the Manila regional trial court (RTC) regarding the operations of the LTO.

Tan has blamed the Commission on Audit (COA) for the driver’s license cards mess after it ordered   suspending payment to the previous supplier, Amalgamated Motors Philippines Inc. (AMPI), in September 2013.

The AMPI was LTO’s supplier for driver’s license cards for more than 20 years.

From then on, the LTO has failed to deliver license cards to motorists on time, resulting in a 1.3 million backlog that eventually decreased to 700,000.  

The DOTC, however, awarded the contract to a new supplier, Allcard Philippines Inc., which submitted the lowest bid of P336.87 million for five million driver’s license cards in May 2015.

However, the Manila RTC ordered the agency to stop the award and payment of the driver’s license card contract to Allcard as there “appears to be no approved budget for the project.”

The COA has ordered LTO to stop the license plate deal with Dutch-Filipino consortium PPI-JKG Philippines Inc. for violation of procedures prescribed under Republic Act 9184, the Government Procurement Reform Act. 

LTO spokesman Jason Salvador said that the LTO’s operation has become problematic as the supply of license plates was affected by the port congestion.

An “internal sabotage” has affected the release of the licenses, he added.

However, Salvador said they have investigated the alleged sabotage.

Cabrera said he would not dwell on it, when asked who was to blame for LTO’s problems. Being new in the agency, he said he would instead focus on resolving the problem.

He has only six months to fix LTO before President  Aquino steps down in June. 

He is confident that he would resolve at least “one or two” problems before Aquino’s term ends, but admitted he would have difficulty resolving the license plates problem, Cabrera said.

 

ACIRC ALFONSO TAN JR. ALLCARD PHILIPPINES INC AMALGAMATED MOTORS PHILIPPINES INC AQUINO CABRERA GOVERNMENT PROCUREMENT REFORM ACT IN NOVEMBER LICENSE LTO NBSP
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