Initial delivery of license plates will be made in March 2018, the Department of Transportation (DoTr) said on Thursday.
The DoTr cited issuance by the Land Transportation Office (LTO) of the notice of award to winning bidder Trojan Computer Forms Manufacturing Corporation and J.H. Tonnjes E.A.S.T. GmbH & Co. KG Joint Venture.
“Amid perception that the agency is not moving forward with the supply of license plates, the LTO chief [and]Assistant Secretary Edgar Galvante is on top of the situation and is proceeding with the procurement of license plates with dispatch and in accordance with existing procurement laws,” it said.
“The LTO clarified that the agency has already issued the notice of award to the winning bidder in the procurement of license plates in the amount of P978.8 million on December 1, 2017,” the DoTr added.
In 2013, procurement of motor vehicle plates was questioned before the Commission on Audit and has since remained pending.
The procurement should have covered the supply of license plates from 2014 to 2018.
In 2016, the Supreme Court issued a temporary restraining order preventing the LTO and the DOTr from releasing 700,000 license plates turned over by the Bureau of Customs after the supplier-importer failed to pay the required Customs duties.
Galvante requested an additional P400 million to be included in the LTO’s 2017 budget to pay the duties.
Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade has approved the request and has set aside P1 billion instead from the DoTr’s budget for the procurement.
According to the DOTr, the winning bidder “has already been required to provide the performance security. Initial delivery is expected sometime in March 2018.”
“The LTO assures the public that the agency is doing the best it can, in compliance with existing laws and regulations, to deliver the license plates,” it said.
REICELENE N. IGNACIO