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The peril of the plates
By mlq3 Posted in Daily Dose on August 27, 2008 74 Comments 5 min read
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Today’s Inquirer editorial proposes the abolition of special license plates for officials. This is an issue that appears and clutters the opinion pages and then wanes with predictable regularity. Officialdom, even when not corrupt or abusive, thrives on the symbols of privilege. Special license plates are the equivalent of the gold braid and other insignia that obsesses the military, for example (reading the story of virtually any revolutionary army and you’ll find, as happened to Washington and Aguinaldo, that even in societies aiming to establish a republican regime, titles and symbols of rank obsessed those holding and aspiring to them).

The plates that members of the House and the Senate use are often abused not by the members themselves, but their relatives. College campus parking lots often boast vehicles bearing Congressional plates used by the children or nieces and nephews of Representatives, for example. Neither the schools nor the student bodies do anything about it.

I have always opposed the abolition of official plates not only because I believe that protocol is not the real issue at hand and therefore, that those who oppose protocol only do so from ignorance and the wrong sort of egalitarian instincts but because they do serve a practical purpose.

For example, the editorial completely ignored the flipside to the reality it pointed out: the reality being that it may just be that policemen who spot vehicles bearing official plates will be intimidated into not enforcing traffic rules when it comes to that vehicle; the flipside is that what is probably more intimidating is neither the vehicle nor the plate but rather, the strong probability whoever’s riding in the vehicle is accompanied by bodyguards and a motorcyle escort composed of policemen more senior and agressive than any regular traffic enforcer.

The editorial also ignores the executive department. Aside from the President of the Philippines (No. 1) and the Vice-President of the Philippines (No. 2) in the past, cabinet members had their own official plates. But if you’ve noticed, even cabinet members entitled to cabinet plates have dispensed with using them. Does this mean that they rush around without the benefit of motorcycle escorts or bodyguards? Of course not.

What they do is rush around with escort vehicles and a retinue of motorcycle escorts with sirens, but without official plates, and, I’ve noticed quite often in recent years, usually without any license plates attached to their vehicle at all.

The end result of this is that no one can stop the little convoy trying to bully its way through traffic, but no one can figure out who the official is, although it’s obvious (because some of the escort vehicles sport license plates with red numbers, indicating they are government vehicles) that the person being escorted is an official. Proximity of the little convoys to and from the presidential palace indicates they’re off to or coming from the Palace.

Presidents periodically issue Executive Orders, Administrative Orders, Memorandum Circulars, etc., regulating the use of motorcycle escorts (if memory serves me right, the most recent one limits official escorts and sirens to the President, Vice-President, Senate President. Speaker of the House and Chief Justice, Nos. 1 to 5, respectively), an executive issuance the chief executive’s own subordinates take the lead in ignoring.

Members of Congress in a sense, are too stupid to realize they are living proof of why official plates make sense. As elected officials, they have to respond to the public and when the public is critical of their behavior, they have to modify it accordingly: and the public knows what it does precisely because the official plates identify the members of the legislature.

In contrast, officials in the executive department have it both ways: they violate the law, and do so with impunity, because they continue to enjoy anonymity.

It seems the Speaker of the House is too stupid to tell the LTO, which wants each official plate to identify the district the legislator belongs to, that it ought to look into the number of vehicles used by cabinet members and other presidential subordinates that don’t use license plates at all, and all of which violates executive issuances, and how diplomatic vehicles (the 1000 plates used by ambassadors which are supposed to identify the country of the ambassador) tape over their country designations.

But he is not being too politically-obtuse in not holding a caucus asking his colleagues to limit the plates they use (ideally, each legislator should only get one pair of plates for one vehicle, not multiple plates for multiple vehicles as happens these days) and agree to identifying their districts (if the objection is security then the legislator ought to not use official plates, and not use escorts, and take their chances going incognito in private cars). They’d never agree, and he knows it.

Keep the official plates. We’re entitled to know where our representatives are, and whether they drive around with a minimum of fuss or with an elaborate escort. As with so many things, the debate is over the wrong things -not official plates, but the abuse of them and that includes new innovations as demonstrated by the executive department.


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  1. Why do these congressmen travel with escorts composed of multiple vehicles anyway???

    The Prime Minister of Denmark only gets one escort (and even that is frowned upon by the natives!)

    Have you noticed that the more despotic the ruler, the larger the retinue?

  2. there are more pressing issues we have to deal than this 8 brouhaha.

    Issues like the legitimacy of this government, rampant corruption, cover ups, governance, poverty, inequlaity, forced disappearances, etc, etc.

    i agree with the observation that the Net, while a factor in democratizing the flow of information, has also contributed in giving undeserved attention to some insignificant issues

    the Net has actually miminized our attention span.

  3. “the net has actually minimized our attention span”

    who is “our”?

    i must have missed the survey results

  4. glu gun,

    “the Net has actually miminized our attention span.”

    you mean to say that Manolo is keeping our attention to just Gloria? don’t you think this is one-sided?

    “As with so many things, the debate is over the wrong things -not official plates, but the abuse of them and that includes new innovations as demonstrated by the executive department.”

    I notice EXECUTIVE….
    what about congressmen, governors and the rest of the public officials who also abuse these type of incentives?
    it’s not only the Executives….

  5. Hello,

    Any enterprising young person setting up a website for people to send MMS of cars with protocol plates not supposed to be in that location. It should include the actual plate at the front. “See where your money goes.”

    With this “papahiyain” we hope we can lessen the misuse from the more onion skinned. We can not do anything to those with crocodile skin.

    Regards,
    Elmar

  6. to glu gun: Your managerial skills may need some honing. First, I don’t think you have made it clear that you are the boss and that you will evaluate Q3’s work. More importantly, apparently you have failed to specify to Q3 the criteria that you will evaluate him on.

    Or are you just making miron?

  7. nash,

    the survey results is only for Gloria. why not survey the whole system and its public officials who enjoy the salary paid by the people.

    it’s not that bad…. here’s why according to this link of which i consider positive and be hopeful.

    The UN survey ranked the Philippines 17th (sharing the place with Austria) among 191 countries using a web-measure index that assessed the quality of
    government websites and the level of utilization of information and communications technology (ICT) tools in government, either to provide information and establish internet-based interactive and transactional services. At the top of the survey were the United States, United Kingdom, Singapore, Republic of Korea and Denmark.

    The UN Survey also cited that the Philippines’ integrated portal http://www.gov.ph is “on a par with the best of the world” and could be considered a good practice. It also pointed out that it is one of the few national sites in the world that offer a wireless access alternative for users, either through Short Message Service, Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) or through a Pocket PC section

    http://www.philippine-embassy.at/press/2007/pr07-07.pdf

    This e-government tools have much improved during Gloria’s term.

    I hope the younger people will keep their minds open and allow other opinions to balance the issue. there’s plenty of hope- Education in a positive way.

  8. An example of important news that most Americans will not read or even hear about. This is about executive privilege and oversight by congress over the executive department.

    “WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A U.S. judge ruled against the Bush administration in its fight with Congress over a probe into the firings of U.S. attorneys by refusing on Tuesday to delay an order that current and former White House aides comply with congressional subpoenas.”

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080826/pl_nm/usa_congress_bush_dc

    I agree with MLQ3 that all high level members of the three branches of government have identifying plates both as a status symbol and as an identification tag. In fact make it specific -like which district ,agency, justice or senator. transparency has a way of mitigating behavior

    The revolution in communication is a two sided blade. It has brought about too much information at a click.

    “If Everyone’s Talking, Who Will Listen?”

    By Dusty Horwitt
    Sunday, August 24, 2008; B03

    “Everybody jokes about “TMI” these days: “Too much information,” we say laughingly, when someone tells a story full of embarrassing detail about some personal foible or intimate relationship. But in our information-overloaded society, the concept of TMI is no joke. The information avalanche coming from all sides — the Internet, PDAs, hundreds of television channels — is burying us in extraneous data that prevent important facts and knowledge from reaching a broad audience.”

    “Lawyers are familiar with this phenomenon. In fact, they use it to their advantage: They know that if you want to hide damaging information about a case, there’s nothing like a document dump to do the trick. You make the facts freely available — along with so much irrelevant data that no one will ever find them.”

    “But the implications for our democracy are troubling. To achieve their goals, political movements need to reach and influence tens of millions of citizens. Despite conventional thinking that the Internet helps spread information, such reach is actually impossible online.”

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/08/22/AR2008082202396_pf.html

  9. Another gem from the immeasurable amount of info out there.”

    “When Malacañang appointed Romy Neri last month as SSS president and “social welfare czar”, people rightly objected. The SSS, along with GSIS, PhilHealth and Pag-IBIG, are private provident funds for retirement, healthcare and housing. As such, they are not subject to government use. And so Malacañang backed off, murmuring that Neri’s Cabinet rank is only to enable him to invoke executive privilege if asked about sleaze at the top. Critics were satisfied. The people’s money was safe, for then.”

    “Not for long, though. Congress is about to pass a law that will force supposed government housing agencies to condone P68 billion in loans to 300,000 home borrowers. But the “agencies” are not limited to the National Home Mortgage Finance Corp. that lends to lower middle-class families, or the National Housing Authority that subsidizes mass housing, or the Home Guarantee Corp. that insures the mortgage papers. Also listed in the bill at the bicameral conference committee are our SSS, GSIS and Pag-IBIG (Home Development Mutual Fund).”

    “The bill disguises as pro-poor; in truth, it is only for brownie points. Its authors cry crocodile tears that 265,927 homebuyers can no longer repay loans because of soaring inflation. Ninety-four percent of NHA borrowers are delinquent payers. So all six entities must write off the loans and move on.”

    “But wait a minute. If the NHA’s low-cost housing awardees are the problem, why include middle-class member-borrowers from SSS, GSIS and Pag-IBIG? That’s the problem with elitist politicians. They lump together the dirt poor and the working class as all living in houses much smaller than their mansions. In the process, they mix up state welfare projects with private lending for housing.”

    “The SSS, GSIS and Pag-IBIG have their own rules — and penalties — for delinquent loan repayment. Depending on the gravity, the borrower may be blacklisted or the house repossessed. At times the private funds also offer amnesties. In short, the three act according to their respective financial capabilities. Congress must not dictate on them, just to make a few senators and congressmen look good in time for reelection.” Jarius Bondoc, Philippine Star, Aug. 27/08

    Is it not wonderful that we have a country that is so so rich and can be so generous…. Yup simply transfer that debt to the unborn….

    Hmmmmm … elections must be close and the pandering to the ignorant is about to start……

    Roxas and the rest of the crowd will be starting what one professor called competitive populism…

    It never ceases to amaze me how this country continues to “shoot itself in the foot.”

    Short the dollar though as the Japanese are about to formally ‘foreclose’ on the Philippines through the JPEPA.

  10. The Philippines simply had Cogressmen/women who are simply insecure & pathetic ! They actually think that having the 8-plate brings them some prestige..Hahahaaaa. Bunch of low life idiots !

  11. UP n student

    : Your managerial skills may need some honing. First, I don’t think you have made it clear that you are the boss and that you will evaluate Q3’s work. More importantly, apparently you have failed to specify to Q3 the criteria that you will evaluate him on.

    Or are you just making miron? ”

    Are you referring to yourself?

  12. off-topic: i saw a replay of the explainer yesterday but you weren’t there. i swear the guest host looked like a younger, spanish version of rudy fernandez!

  13. gov.ph??????

    ““on a par with the best of the world”

    Actually it’s CRAP. It has very little INTERACTIVE facilities. You can’t look up documents, archives, track your paperwork…it’s just a normal website with a heavily censored forum. (and i checked just now – page cannot be found- on some links)

    I’ve seen the Slovenian Government e-portal and that’s one of the best in terms of getting things done from your desk. (They are even test driving election voting via text!)

  14. People in the country are such abusers of power. That’s why were such a symbols-crazed society. Not to condone the practice, but the lower strata easily learn the ways of the high and mighty. Goes all the way down I’m afraid, in a different degree.

    Barangay captains selling barangay ID/voters’ cards to their constituents, plainclothes policemen showing their badges to get free meals, press people their press cards to gain freebies/free entries, bilibid ‘mayors’ showing off their bahala-na-gang tatoos to be sleep in the top bunk, etc.

    What to do, if you’re at the bottom of the food chain? “Pare papitik na lang!”

  15. majacko, i am overseas. will be away for two weeks.

    leytenian, please review the entry. the point is we can see congress’ members tootling around because they use official plates while a great number of executive officials zoom around with much more elaborate escorts and without the benefit of license plates at all.

    as for one sided you are welcome to review this blog where i’ve been discussing the role partisanship -choosing sides- plays in politics and democracy.

  16. “Filipino politicians merely reflect the people who elected them.”

    On that note Benign-zero you may be correct. Saving-face/Showiness is a very Asian-Oriental trait. We like showing off, hence the megabus of alalays of Tongressmen and Barangay Tanods..Recent newsreports from Beijing made a big fuss about why the London Mayor did not button his shirt and how he received the flag with one hand.

    But then again, Manolo is right, we deserve to see what our politicians are doing during office hours. If possible, they should be wearing neon vests for high visibility.

  17. But then what about my, yours and every one’s constitutional right to equality?? And also Vanity Plate is available at a price where anyone can have their own printed the way he likes it..like let us say, “numero uno”…I like this one…”No Evidence” or even “Smuggler”

  18. vic : I think it remains work-in-progress for Pinas :weep: ….. the enabling laws for “… constitutional right to equality” 😛

    ————-

    What about ” OCW 2012″ — a goal-oriented Vanity Plate?

  19. Government logos should also appear on the sides of government vehicles. Para di magamit na pang-porma.

  20. Vic,

    FYI, Its not like in North America where motorists think of cute and funny vanity plates to express their individuality. Saw a Virginia plate once that said UTOT MO.

    Philippine drivers, especially the Chinoys, are more interested in numerology I think. That’s why the real winners are the vanity plates containing six similar digits, which are bidded out big time. I learned that that 88888 (five 8’s) fetched something close to 500,000 pesos, almost the price of a Kia compact car.

  21. I do not look at the 8 as a vanity plate. I dont know why it is called as such when it serves merely to indicate. An identification perhaps, a marker similar to that which is stamped with a hot iron on a cattle`s butt.

    Organizations even have their own identity plates such as the Rotary and the Freemasons. Though some may interpret them as vanity they serve the primary purpose of easily finding your brother wherever you are.

    The predicament is that wrong persons are taking advantage of the identification plates so that they will be associated to the prestige of the owner, which makes such plates generic for high position.

    They are the plates I kinda see at hotel parking areas and supermalls.

    I think kuya Manolo is talking about the correct use of these `government` license plates alone, and it has nothing to do with the plates created by man`s vain fancies, such as COOL ME. We are only talking of its necessity in the transparency of officials, so that we can identify them wherever they are especially when they enter motels, brothels and casinos with their pair of concubines.

  22. Given the daily massive traffic jams, its really a big headache for an official has to attend a hearing at the Philippine Senate in the morning and another one at the House (Batasan) early afternoon and then be going back to your office in the Makati area. Knowing how unforgiving the representatives of the people are!

    I’m not sure under whose presidency it was, but that plan about all government offices being located in one general vicinity (North triangle area) a la Washington D.C or London., was a good one.

    Somehow, this problem about abuse of official plates and motorcycle escorts could have been minimized if that North Triangle plan pushed through.

    Unless you’re like MMDA’s Bayani Mercado whose escort is a wrecker, its good if you have super lucky 888888 license plate to reach your meeting on time.

  23. ‘government offices being located in one general vicinity’

    The Commision on Aufit building in the Batasan compound was renovated to accomodate the Senate in 1987. The Senate insisted on holding office in the old Congress building. Then they moved to the GSIS building. Pretty soon the Senate will hold office somewhere in Tagaytay.

  24. Official plates are just an extension of government red plates. In Australia, the states do not issue government plates. But government vehicles are known because they have the government seal.

    Now in more mature democracies, members of parliament are entiled to use official plates but only from their residence to the parliament and back and also if the are on parliamentary buisiness.

    This is of ancient provenance that comes from England. The MPs need protection and riding in an official car means they have immunity.

  25. The government should just have a limo service for ferrying government officials. No need to issue special plates. The government can also buy cars in bulk. The government can also introduce video conferencing for meetings attended by lower ranking employees.

  26. supremo,

    Now that we’re talking about, government offices in one vicinty/area would save not only the State but the people billions of pesos.

    Government bureaucrats and even members of congress could just take a UP-type ‘ikot’ jeepney to hop from one meeting to another. Even if Benign0 wants an ‘ocho-ocho’ route, to include his Ateneo alma mater, could be accomodated.

    For the ordinary citizens, after paying their SSS/GSIS premiums and Pag-ibig payments, they could drop other GOP offices, get their POEA accreditation and renew their passports.

    Come to think about it?

  27. “The MPs need protection and riding in an official car means they have immunity.”

    This ‘protection’ thing only arises because our officials are so reviled and hated. Kaya naman ang mga third class mindanao congressmen, naka-humvee pa dahil marami sila atraso. Were these officials honest, they would not need this security eklat.

    (Actually, they prefer to cycle to work now. As is the case with David Cameron who was binangga ng delivery van while cycling to parliament and the London Mayor who often ignores red lights).

  28. one of the most admired presidents in the US was JFK because he said: “Ask not what the country can do for you, but what you can do for the country”.

    Pinoy politicians are the exact opposite. They consider government coffers a largesse for their own personal expense account and would ask for every perks and exploit to the max government resources.

    Was it Senator Avelino during the fifties who said: “What are we in power for?”

    Benigno,

    Yes our politicians are reflective of the people who elected them. “I am because we are”. (Bishop Tutu)
    I am corrupt because we are corrupt.

    But our people are not corrupt. Otherwise, they would have benefitted from the largesse of the government.

  29. PSI,

    Have you seen a bird’s eye view the Charles de Gaulle airport terminal? If the Philippine government can construct a building similar to that then government officials can just walk from one government office to another.

  30. supremo,

    It’s really a pity that RP didn’t implement such a central government area. Sayang, talaga. Well, as what’s always been said in this blog, ‘magaling talaga ang Pinoy sa planning, pero mahina sa implementation.’

    But I’m trying to recall a lady commenter-colleague who used very appropriate terms. Exacto! Maybe cvj could help us remember?

  31. Actually, they prefer to cycle to work now… nash

    nash,

    there’s one congressman doing that. cong. manuel zamora or way kurat of compostela valley. his from mindanao at wala siyang humbee.

    another one i knew used to ride on his motorbike and just renting an apartment in manila, congresman rodolfo aguinaldo of cagayan. I heard hindi rin siya kurakot during his term but he was a former dreaded military man during martial law… he was gunned down by the npa.

    anyway, why are mindanao congressmen third class? the speaker of the house is from mindanao. third class ba sa pangungurakot? or third class dahil sa pagiging muslim?
    what’s first class to you? those politicians in luzon like senators lito lapid, bong revilla and jinggoy Estrada?

  32. I meant third class municipalities (the economics – revenue etc…) I think some provinces have fifth class municipalities pa nga eh.

    and you wonder, if these guys represent 5th class municipalities, why can they afford fancy cars?

  33. incidentally, Sen. Ninoy Aquino municipality in Sultan Kudarat is a 4th class municipality. He must be turning in his grave.

    Lubao is a first class municipality and the gambling lords there are first class. Pang-hollywood talaga.

  34. PSI,

    ‘RP didn’t implement such a central government area’

    We have heavy concentration of government buildings around Rizal Park and Quezon Memorial. Ayaw lumipat ng iba kasi matigas ang ulo tulad ng Senate. Yung iba naman may under the table deal with office building owners.

  35. grd,

    i am a republican and my views would be biased against the democrats. the reason why I am a republican is for a singular personal reason that i do not believe in abortion.

    is obama like jfk? i don’t know. obama is a rising star and is black but some say that his personal aura is replete with flaws. he offers everything to the american people the way our politicians would offer everything to our people only to renege in them after elections. his promise of change can raise some false hope and expectations from americans, whom i think majority are also gullible,like the Filipinos.

    Here is a piece of Ann Coulter, a rabid Republican:

    “Obama had been so careful until now, “framing” his message as “change” — rather than partial birth abortion, driver’s licenses for illegal aliens, tax hikes, socialized medicine and abandoning mandatory minimum prison sentences for federal crimes.”

    Look at Obama’s pitch of tax hikes and socialized medicine. Republicans would like private sectors to undertake health program and the government provides only regulation. Republicans are for income tax shields, while democrates are for raising them.

    Personally, I have not seen the side of Obama that pitches the concept that the people, especially the politicians have an obligation to their government (what you can do to the country) instead of of milking the country dry to the max. What I am seeing right now is tha Obama would like the government to provide health programs to all Americans and therefore burdened every tax payer of the costs thereof, instead of the individual taxpayers taking care of their own health insurance.

    The basic complaint of American-Pinoys here is that they worked hard while some minority Americans and to some extent white Americans do not work and would apply for social benefits, ask for abortion funding for teenage daughters and food stamps from the social security system, aka, the government.

    So Obama, from my perception though, he may have second thought about his party’s platform, though this concept is built-in in democratic culture that it is alright for the people and the politicians to be parasites of the government.

    Kennedy is Obama? I don’t think so. 🙂

  36. and I am inclined to say that Mccain is not Dubya, either. Heck, just compare the hotel-accomodations they had during the Vietnam War!!

  37. McCain would be more entertaining to us who are not USAmericans. He just cracks me up. For this reason, I hope he wins. (Because American Foreign policy will not change ke republican or ke democrat kaya dun nalang tayo sa better stand up comedian).

    Or simply put, you are drinking ginebra in the kanto, who would you rather be with? McCain with his vietnam stories or Obama with his abstruse language?

    Barack for all his ‘change-change’ eklat chose an oldtimer for running mate. WTF was that all about? Change change kunwari, trapo naman ang VP.

  38. jcc,
    If Filipinos in the U.S. realy believe in catholicism, then they should all be republicans because of it’s anti-abortion views. I think they lean more on the democratic side due to it’s socilized views wherein you come to the U.S., not work for a living, never contribute anything to Social Security but once he/she reaches 65 get medicaid and SSI as an example.

    I will never be a democrat. I hate paying taxes where these social parasites get their dibs by just having babies left and right.

  39. Barack Hussein Obama is a Muslim who has lied about his religious background, including his claim to being a devout Christian.
    I have nothing against Muslims as long as they are not the extremist type but why lie about it.

    Dunham ( mother of Obama) married for the second time to another Muslim, Lolo Soetoro who educated his stepson as a good Muslim by enrolling him in one of Jakarta’s Wahabbi schools. Wahabbism is the radical teaching that created the Muslim terrorists who are now waging Jihad on the industrialized world.

    http://urbanlegends.about.com/library/bl_barack_obama_muslim.htm
    his foundation cannot be ignored.

  40. Was Obama Ever a Muslim?

    “I’ve always been a Christian,” said Obama, focusing on his own personal lack of practice of Islam as a child to deny any connection to Islam. But Muslims do not see practice as key. For them, that he was born to a line of Muslim males makes him born a Muslim. Further, all children born with an Arabic name based on the H-S-N trilateral root (Hussein, Hassan, and others) can be assumed to be Muslim, so they will understand Obama’s full name, Barack Hussein Obama, to proclaim him a born Muslim.

    http://www.danielpipes.org/article/5286

  41. Born a Muslim, always a Muslim, especially if the law of the land is sharia.

    On October 14, 2004 Malaysia Court of Appeal heard the case of Azlina Jailani, who adopted the name Lina Joy when she became a Christian in 1998. Lina Joy had appealed for a second time for the right to remove the word “Islam” from her national identity card.an identified Muslim.


    Lina Joy first applied for permission to change her religious status in 2001. Without this official change, she could not marry outside the Muslim faith.

    …according to a Malaysian newspaper report in May 2001, High Court Judge Datuk Faiza Tamby Chik declared that, “As a Malay, the plaintiff exists under the tenets of Islam until her death.”

    Judge Faiza also ruled that the Islamic sharia court must handle the case, since conversion came under sharia jurisdiction.

    FOOTNOTE: How much strongly is sharia now in today’s Mindanao jurisprudence? And has MILF stated what happens for BJE ? ]

  42. . . . . How strong already is sharia-influence over today’s Mindanao jurisprudence?

    And has MILF mentioned if a person born into Muslim faith later change religions or marry outside the Muslim faith — in a BJE ruled by MILF when MILF says “…not subject to Philippine constitution”?

    or is it “…. sign first… we’ll tell you what you agreed to later”?

  43. The riding public has long been lamenting about arrogant drivers in vehicles with low numbered plates, most especially those with the number 8. To make matters worse, there is no way of knowing who are these obnoxious individuals since the plates do not identify the congressmen, like it used to. There are also probably hundreds of former house representatives that still have at least four sets of number 8 plates/each. The LTO chief also mentioned that fake congressional plates also proliferate.

    As of 2007, more than 1,600 protocol plates have been issued to government officials. Why is it that many? The answer lies in the law itself. According to EO 400

    SEC. 3. These low-numbered/protocol plates shall be issued in pairs for motor vehicles duly registered in the name of the above listed officials or to their respective spouses. However, not more than two pairs of the said license plates for issuance to two (2) motor vehicles shall be assigned to any of the said officials with the exception of the President of the Philippines, the Vice President of the Philippines, the President of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. Senators and Congressmen of the Philippines may be assigned not more than four (4) pairs of low-numbered/protocol plates.

    http://www.wazzupmanila.com/these-low-numbered-protocol-plates-in-the-philippines/525/

  44. Who is responsible to implement?

    EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 400

    SEC. 4. The assignment or transfer of low-numbered/protocol plates to unauthorized person/s or motor vehicles by government officials entitled thereto is strictly prohibited. Violation of this prohibition shall be sufficient cause for the revocation of the herein granted privilege and for the confiscation of the issued protocol plates, and imposition of the corresponding penalty for the violation/s committed as provided by existing laws.

    SEC. 5. The Assistant Secretary, Land Transportation Office, is hereby authorized to promulgate the necessary REGULATORY measures to implement this order.

    http://www.ops.gov.ph/records/eo_no400.htm

    why is it common among department heads- the lack of implementation skills?

    what is the solution? maybe we should check the resume of the people in charge of implementation? baka the qualification do not fit the job description?

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