Philippine Daily Inquirer


- By Krixia Sub­ing­sub­ing @krix­i­asINQ

The Land Trans­porta­tion Of­fice (LTO) on Wed­nes­day fi­nally is­sued more than 230,000 li­cense plates for ve­hi­cles that were reg­is­tered from July to Oc­to­ber 2016, but re­mains faced with a back­log of nearly 8 mil­lion plates dat­ing back to 2014.

LTO records showed that an­other 5.9 mil­lion mo­tor­cy­cle plates pend­ing re­lease since Fe­bru­ary 2014 have yet to be pro­cessed, since the agency pri­or­i­tized the plates for four-wheel ve­hi­cles.

Still, Trans­port Sec­re­tary Arthur Tu­gade hailed Wed­nes­day’s re­lease as a sig­nif­i­cant step in mov­ing away from a state of af­fairs he sar­don­ically called “Repub­lika Ng Walang Plaka (No-Plates Repub­lic).”

The LTO’s plate-mak­ing plant in Que­zon City has pro­duced 231,332 pairs for mo­tor ve­hi­cles since April to cover the July-Oc­to­ber 2016 re­quire­ments.

The plant would have to pro­duce at least 2 mil­lion more to cover those reg­is­tered up to June 25, 2018.

A huge chunk of the back­log ac­tu­ally stems from the 2.9 mil­lion ve­hi­cles reg­is­tered from Fe­bru­ary 2014 to July 2016, whose plates have yet to be pro­cessed in view of a no­tice of dis­al­lowance from the Com­mis­sion on Au­dit.

The COA is­sued the no­tice on July 13, 2015, say­ing that the LTO’s deal with sup­plier Power Plates De­vel­op­ment Con­cepts Inc.-J. Knieriem BV-Goes (PPI-JKG) was “il­le­gal” or awarded with­out an al­lot­ment un­der the 2014 Gen­eral Ap­pro­pri­a­tions Act.

 ?? —JUNJIE MEN­DOZA ?? Arthur Tu­gade
—JUNJIE MEN­DOZA Arthur Tu­gade

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