• Online processing of drivers’ licenses eyed


    THE Department of Transportation is studying the possibility of allowing drivers’ license applications online for greater public convenience, an official said.

    “We are studying the possibility of making the application for drivers’ license online if the driver does not have any violation,” Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade said during the 3rd National Congress for the Transport Cooperative Sector in Isabela on the weekend.

    Tugade also said that once new vehicles leave car dealerships, they should already have license plates.

    Research conducted by nongovernment organizations has found that a minimum wage earner loses two days’ income because of the manual system of registration at the Land Transportation Office (LTO).

    “It was estimated that one needs to spend at least five hours at the LTO to register a vehicle and this takes from two to three days,” the Filipino Alliance for Transparency and Empowerment said.

    Car owners and transport workers lose a combined P4 billion a year because they need to be absent from work just to register their vehicles at the LTO, it said.

    Tugade also announced that the 13-year moratorium on the issuance of franchises to public utility vehicles would be lifted upon the release of Omnibus Franchising Guidelines (OFG) on June 19.

    The OFG is part of the department’s public utility vehicle (PUV) modernization program.

    The moratorium on the granting of new franchises supposedly led to the proliferation of illegal transport vehicles and even overloading of PUVs, particularly buses.

    Streets free of obstructions
    Meanwhile, an official of the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) said it was possible to have streets free of obstructions in the National Capital Region just like in Davao City.

    “Our President has been able to do it in Davao. He cleaned the streets, the rivers, and was able to remove sidewalk vendors,” MMDA General Manager Thomas Orbos said in a radio interview on Sunday.

    “That’s the challenge for us. If it was done in Davao, we can also do it here,” Orbos added.

    The MMDA has ongoing clearing operations of streets in the metropolis, including those at Baclaran in Parañaque City and Roxas Boulevard.

    Orbos urged businessmen to cooperate with the government to avoid traffic congestion in the region.

    “When I got the position last year, I found out that these businessmen do not give the MMDA a traffic management plan. We were only able to do it now,” he said.


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