DOTr chief apologizes to public, LGUs over RFID mess
MANILA, Philippines — Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade on Wednesday night apologized to motorists and local government units (LGUs) affected by the botched implementation of the mandatory cashless toll payment scheme in some tollways.
“I express my apologies to the users of the tollways, to the local government for the convenience whatever it cost. Be assured that the cost of the inconvenience is not designed, is not intended,” Tugade said during a meeting with President Rodrigo Duterte.
“There will be a day-to-day curing moments considering what is happening now in what we called as birthing experience. Aayusin namin iyan, Mr. President,” he added.
The government has ordered toll operators to automate their payment system to limit human contact and the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
But the implementation of the Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) payment scheme was marred with glitches that caused heavy traffic buildup in some tollways.
Meanwhile, Duterte blamed the “incompetence” of the Toll Regulatory Board (TRB, saying that the regulatory agency should not have allowed the RFID scheme to be put into use without a trial run to ensure its efficiency. He then warned to fire all TRB officials if another fiasco happens.
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