Cainta Rizal Mayor Johnielle Keith Pasion "Kit" Nieto apologized in a Friday afternoon Facebook post for riding a motorcycle without a helmet.
"I make this public apology to all who have witnessed me riding a motorcycle without a helmet heading towards a church to attend a wedding. I offer no excuses for breaching the law.. i only attempted to explain what happened and why i did it.. but it does not in any way exempt me from complying with what is required by our laws," Nieto said on Facebook.
The mayor also assured citizens that, on Monday, he would secure a citation ticket at the Land Transportation Office, after which he would head to the Department of Interior and Local Government office to face any disciplinary sanction.
Nieto said that he was ready "vacate his office" if that was deemed to be the appropriate penalty.
Earlier, road safety advocate James Deakin criticized Nieto for violating RA 10054 or the "Motorcycle Helmet Act of 2009."
"This is something that goes beyond the law. This is also a golden opportunity as a public official to educate and shine much needed light on the importance of road safety and the value of saving countless lives by simply wearing a helmet," Deakin said.
According to the Act, all motorcycle riders, including drivers and back riders, were required "to wear standard protective motorcycle helmets while driving, whether long or short drives, in any type of road or highway."
Violators would be penalized with a "fine of One thousand five hundred pesos (P1,500.00) for the first offense; Three, thousand pesos (P3,000.00) for the second offense; Five thousand pesos (P5,000.00) for the third offense; and Ten thousand pesos (P10,000.00) plus confiscation of the driver's license for the fourth and succeeding offenses."
Deakin meanwhile appreciated Nieto's apology, and it took courage for the mayor to admit his mistake.
"Thank you, Mayor Nieto. Now we can all move forward," Deakin said.
— DVM, GMA News