NOTE: THIS STORY WAS FIRST PUBLISHED IN THE BOHOL CHRONICLE’S SUNDAY PRINT EDITION.
Under an intense public barrage of criticism aimed at the adamant stance of the Land Transportation Office (LTO) Regional Office 7 to require the Boholanos to personally secure their license plates in Cebu, LTO Regional Director Victor Caindec announced the arrival of 65,821 motor vehicles and motorcycle plates set for release as soon as the distribution system has been completed.
The long-awaited license plates arrived from Cebu City on Friday and are now stored in a space provided by the City Government at the City Hall where a tentative schedule for a weekend distribution to vehicle owners will be initially implemented.
Caindec, in a press conference held at the Food Court, Island City Mall on Friday, recognized the public clamor and the role of the media in bringing the license plates to Bohol that triggered an acrimonious word war that played out in the mainstream and social media for the past several weeks.
“I am happy to tell you that in answer to the call of the Boholanos to bring the plates to your province, the plates are physically here and we will distribute these plates as swiftly and efficiently as possible,” according to Caindec.
“The will of the people is properly heard and the community comes together to solve the problem confronting them,” added Caindec who softened his perceived unbending stand in sending the license plates to Bohol that riled up the sensibilities of the Boholanos.
Caindec also expressed his gratitude to 1st District Congressman Edgar Chatto for extending a helping hand to the LTO to resolve the license plate issue and Tagbilaran City Mayor Geesnell “Baba” Yap for providing space for the distribution and storage of the license plates.
Caindec also disclosed five offices will now serve the licensing needs of the Boholanos with 3 offices in Tagbilaran City – LTO District Office, two satellite offices in Alturas Mall, and ICM, and a District Office in Garcia-Hernandez/Jagna, and an extension office in Talibon.
Incoming Governor Aristotle “Aris” Aumentado also assured Caindec that he will push for the inclusion of the budgetary requirements of the two LTO extension offices with the Department of Budget and Management.
Amidst the stepped-up crackdown on traffic violators by the LTO now ongoing in the province and an alarming increase in road-related accidents, Caindec urged the motorists to just follow traffic rules and regulations and carry with them the proper documents while driving to avoid unnecessary apprehensions even as the intensified campaign is geared towards a safer driving environment. (Chito M. Visarra)