President Duterte signed the ‘doble plaka’ law sometime last month. This law, officially known as the Motorcycle Crime Prevention Act, implements a new license system for motorcycles. Aside from requiring larger plates, it also requires license plates at both the front and back of a motorcycle. It’s passing into law incited discontent from several groups of people, even resulting in unity ride against the law.
It seems these efforts were not put to waste. In a speech last April 6 (Saturday), the president promised he would bring up a review of the law with the Land Transportation Office (LTO). He is quoted as saying:
I will try to convince the LTO to maybe hang onto it, i-suspend ko lang muna, kasi it is not good. It is dangerous to place another gadget, lalo na may kanto ang plate number eh. [I will try to convince the LTO to maybe hang onto it, I will suspend it for the meantime because it is not good. It is dangerous to place another gadget, especially since a license plate has corners.]
He also had suggestions for changes that could be made regarding the law:
Lakihan na lang ninyo ang plate number sa likod by one-fourth para makita talaga yung number. Ang importante talaga yung sa likod. [Instead, increase the size of the rear plate by one-fourth so that the number will be more visible. The rear is more important.]
[The fine is] masyadong mataas [too high]. Maybe as compromise, I’m willing [to lower it to] P10,000 to P15,000.
Some time was also spent justifying why the bill was signed into law in the first place, especially if it would only be rescinded:
Alam mo kasi bakit pinirmahan ko, ang pulis tao ko yan, ang military tao ko, anong irekomenda nila, I will adopt it. Basta maglagay lang ng rationale. [Why did I sign it? Because the police and the military are my people. Whatever they recommend, I will adopt it, as long as they provide a rationale.]
Despite this, Senator Richard Gordon has announced his intention to explain the rationale and necessity for the law. He mentioned in his statement: “Ipinagtatanggol ko lang ang mga taong pinapatay ng mga riding-in-tandem assassins [I am just defending those killed by riding-in-tandem assassins] How do we do justice to these people? You limit the way people can get away with riding without motor plates and riding with stolen motorcycles.”
What do you think — should the law be suspended or should it still pass?