De Lima says new motorcycle law anti-poor, oppressive
MANILA, Philippines — Senator Leila De Lima on Thursday slammed the new law seeking to deter crimes by requiring motorcycle riders to use larger license plates.
De Lima said Republic Act No. 11235 or the Motorcycle Crime Prevention Act is only being used to mask the “government’s incapacity and inability to weed out criminals and fight criminality,” and that the law is “oppressive” and “anti-poor.”
Under the law, motorcycle license plates must be displayed in front and at the back of the vehicle and must be readable from a distance of 15 meters. The license plates will also be color coded.
“Given that a large majority of those who make use of motorcycles belong to the lower socioeconomic classes who can ill afford such exorbitant fines, this Act can definitively be labeled as ‘anti-poor’ itself,” De Lima said in a statement.
“From where I sit, R.A. 11235 is an oppressive law,” the senator added.
The senator also noted a “glaring disparity” between the fines for those caught not using larger and more readable plates and those caught without license plates at all.
“Section 7 of this Act penalizes motorcycle riders not using the larger, more readable plates with prison correccional (six months and one day to six years imprisonment) or a fine of not less than P50,000 but not more than P100,000, or both,” De Lima said.
“On the other hand, drivers of vehicles not covered under this Act who drive without license plates are merely slapped with a fine that falls between P5,000 and P10,000,” the senator added.
De Lima also noted several flaws in the new law, including the possibility of stolen motorcycles and plates being used to commit crimes.
“Persons who intend to commit crimes on motorcycles have already considered this scenario and would most likely not use their own vehicles when breaking the law,” De Lima said. /ee
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