Land Transportation Office chief Assistant Secretary Edgar Galvante clarified on Friday that the long-awaited new license plates that would be released starting March next year will only cover registrations from 2016 onward.
In an interview on "Dobol B sa News TV," Galvante said that the notice of disallowance from the Commission on Audit for an old contract covering 2013 to 2015 registrations has not yet been lifted.
"Separate po na contract itong mga bagong plaka. Ang mga ire-release hopefully simula sa Marso ay 2016 registrations muna, sa ilalim ng bagong kontrata."
Under the new contract, the LTO will buy the plate-making machines, he said, adding that the purchase contract has already been signed.
But he said, "'Yung mga old na plaka na hindi pa na-deliver [pero na bayaran na] ay maibibigay din ... pag na-resolve na yung kaso at ma-lift na ang notice of disallowance."
"Itong bagong contract covering 2016 registrations ay para mabawasan lamang ang backlog sa pag-deliver ng mga plaka."
Early this week, Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez called for Galvante's resignation for his alleged failure to do his job.
The delay in the issuance of license plates was caused by the temporary restraining order of the Supreme Court (SC) in June 2016 preventing the LTO and then Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) from distributing 700,000 license plates turned over by the Bureau of Customs after the plates' supplier-importer failed to pay the required customs duties.
The 2013 procurement of motor vehicle (MV)/ motorcycle (MC) plates, which covers the supply of license plates from 2014-2018, was questioned before the courts and the Commission on Audit which remains pending to date. —LBG, GMA News