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Driver’s license card issuance to be affected by court injunction — LTO chief

MANILA, Philippines —  The delivery of driver's license cards will be temporarily halted after a court issued an indefinite suspension on its procurement.

This was after the Quezon City Regional Trial Court (QCRTC) issued a preliminary injunction to the government’s procurement of plastic license cards on October 13.

“Dati magiging goodbye papel na tayo, tapos magiging welcome back,” Land Transportation Office (LTO) chief Assistant Secretary Vigor Mendoza said in an interview with Radyo 630.  (We should've said goodbye to paper, but then we're welcoming it back)

Given the development, Mendoza emphasized that the LTO's main priority is addressing the agency's existing backlogs from the previous months.

“Ang maapektuhan niyan yung current usage natin yung pang araw-araw…ngayon yung mag aapply eh mapapahinto natin yan kasi magkukulang tayo ng card,” Mendoza said. (That will affect our current usage, our daily operations... now we will have to stop those who are applying because we'll run short of cards.)

The case originated from the lawsuit filed by Allcards Inc. against the Department of Transportation, LTO, and Banner Plasticard Inc., the winning bidder for the supply of the plastic license cards citing the denial of due process during the bidding.

The said procurement was initiated to resolve the plastic card shortage for driver's licenses that began in April this year.

Mendoza said that the injunction on the procurement has yet to be in effect.

However, once it is in effect, Mendoza said that they have no choice but to follow and adjust the timeline and halt the issuance of card licenses.

“Once the injunction becomes effective, mahihinto ang supplier natin, hindi na siya pwede mag deliver,” Mendoza said. (Once the injunction becomes in effect, our supplier will stop, and they won't be able to deliver anymore.)

In August 2023, the delivery of the license cards was suspended after the same court issued a temporary restraining order (TRO) on the award of the contract.

The TRO lapsed after 20 days which made it possible for the LTO to issue over a million license cards.