Public Outcry Against Philippine LTO

The Land Transportation Office (LTO) here is seriously considering the public outcry against the implementation of the Administrative Order AHS 2008-015, governing the operation of motorcycle vehicles in the province.

Tagbilaran City LTO registrar Joel Maloloy-on, in an interview, assured the public he will bring up the matter to the regional office. He was set to report to LTO regional office last Friday.

The Sangguniang Panlalawigan asked the LTO to postpone the said implementation until such time the motorists are fully aware of the regulations. The SP last week unanimously passed Resolution No. 2008-478, requesting LTO-Tagbilaran district office through registrar Mr. Joel T. Maloloy-on to defer the said enforcement of the said administrative order until January 1, 2009 introduced by board member Alfonso Damalerio II.

SP member Atty. Aster A. Piollo argued that the implementation should be deferred because “not so many people know of this AO, so it is incumbent upon the LTO to make an extensive information campaign province-wide.” The lady lawmaker of Dimiao and Lila, however, reminded her colleagues to also help the awareness campaign because “we are the ones asking for an extension for a period of time.” The provincial government should help circulate the information regarding the AO implementation and “at the same time to implement the program,” she added.

The said AO signed and approved only last May 15, 2008 imposes stiff penalty on motor riding public apparently without any consideration of the economic hardship now facing the populace because of soaring prices of basic commodities.

Failure on the part of the motorcycle driver to wear a helmet means PhP1,500 fine and non-wearing of helmet of the back-rider, PhP1,000. Motorcycles having defective headlights and other paraphernalia cost the owner PhP1,000.

The administrative order is also very strict to those motorcycle drivers wearing slippers or sandals for he would be slapped with PhP100 fine, for first offense; and PhP700 and PhP1,000 for second and third offenses, respectively.

He explained he cannot just decide to defer the said implementation because he’s just an implementor and, as a good soldier, he has no other option but to implement the law.

He said if he has his way he won’t enforce the AO because he understands the economic situation. But he is amenable to postpone the said implementation until next year.

He personally admitted, however, that the cost of penalties imposed by AO is too excessive. For instance, the fine of P150 per violation of non-wearing of helmet is now escalated to more than 500% or PhP1,500.

He said was learned that also affected of the implementation of the AO is the habal-habal or single motorcycle-for-hire. Some, if not most, of the municipalities are tolerating the operation of habal-habal, which is considered illegal, by issuing business permit, he said.

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