MANILA, Philippines — A lawmaker is calling on the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Land Transportation Office (LTO) to suspend until the end of the year the emission testing requirement for motor vehicle registration as the country continues to contain the coronavirus pandemic.
House Resolution No. 1007, filed by Cagayan de Oro 2nd District Rep. Rufus Rodriguez, calls on the House of Representatives to express its collective sense for the suspension of the requirement.
“As a result of lockdowns and quarantines in many parts of the country, most transactions with the government were halted, such as the registration of vehicles,” Rodriguez said in the resolution.
However, the lawmaker noted that many vehicle owners are now having their vehicles registered as quarantine protocols and travel restrictions are being eased.
Rodriguez said this has resulted in “very long lines and unusual delays in the process of registration, especially in emission testing centers” which, most of the time, result in violations of social distancing protocols.
“An example is Cagayan de Oro City where complaints have been piling up because what is happening is that owners of motor vehicles have to line up very early in the morning in order to get a number which they get after lining up for four to five hours and then they wait until their number is called and they will be given an appointment for their emission test which is at least two weeks away,” Rodriguez said.
“To address this and to make it easier for vehicle owners, the Department of Transportation and the Land Transportation Office could suspend the emissions testing requirement until the end of the year,” the lawmaker added.
Rodriguez said that suspending the requirement would also give the DOTr and the LTO time to look into complaints and allegations of impropriety against private emission testing centers in the country.
Section 22 of Republic Act No. 8749 or the “Philippine Clean Air Act of 1999” states that “no motor vehicle registration shall be issued unless such motor vehicle passes the emission testing requirement promulgated in accordance with this Act.”