Press Release
February 24, 2021

'Recall the PMVIC Orders'


Committee Report No. 184

Committee on Public Services on P. S. Res. Nos. 634, 638 and 641 on the Operation of PMVICs

Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph G. Recto

I join the good Senator Poe in sponsoring this Committee Report. I praise her for coming up with a report comprehensive in breadth, clear in language, and concise in its findings.

The PMVIC was subjected to a multipoint test and did not pass. The dashboard of test indicators flashed "Fail" results.

The main factory defect, so to speak, is that the legal basis is dubious.

Like many new LTO issuances, it is an example of overreach, a case of one molehill of a rule being inflated to create a mountain of new regulations.

When a program is conceived in mistake, its implementation goes down on a trail of errors.

There was no consultation. Stakeholders were not asked what their thoughts were. The opinion of PUV owners, drivers and operators was not solicited.

Local governments were kept out of the loop, too. The result is a network of testing centers far from the clientele they intend to serve.

Hindi lang malayo, kulang pa. At dahil kulang, mahaba ang pila. The ARTA rule and the President's order of "customer comfort always" have been thrown out of the window.

There was also lack of transparency on what would be covered by the inspection. And the equipment to measure it seemed to have been air dropped from nowhere.

These are technical specs which should have been subjected to independent review by government technicians and scientists who have no interests in the project.

Above all, rolling out new technology should be preceded by a massive information drive so that the people who will be at the mercy of gadgets will know what awaits them.

Is this a case of a business opportunity enforced by government order? Of a supplier waiting in the wings? Of a scheme to profit from penalties? I will not hazard a guess unlike many of our countrymen who have already rushed to their own conclusions.

Another lesson which can be drawn here is that when it comes to fees and fines that will burden the public, the Office of the President should not be bypassed.

Malacañang is the Kilometer Zero from where all rules already covered by laws should depart. Kung wala pa namang batas, the starting point is Congress.

An agency whose dominion extends only to taxis should not arrogate upon itself taxing powers.

Mr. President, my dear colleagues:

I concede that the intention behind the project is laudable. There is no disagreement that the privilege to own a car carries with it the responsibility to make it safe to operate at all times.

Neither is there any debate as to government's right to impose standards of roadworthiness of vehicles.

But there is a way that it can be done, without reckless implementation and without swerving away from the rules—basic traffic rules which those in the driver's seat of our transportation agencies should be the first to follow.

I join Chairperson Grace in endorsing the approval of this Committee Report.

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