A video of an auction facilitated by the Land Transportation Office (LTO) in Isabela went viral on social media after the agency tried to sell dilapidated motorcycles from their impounded area at unreasonable prices.
For example, one motorcycle was being auctioned with a starting bid of PHP 35,865. Like all of the motorcycles in the bidding area, this motorcycle is as good as scrap, according to the disappointed bidders who went to the auction hoping to get a good deal from the LTO.
LTO explains “brand new price”
According to LTO, these impounded motorcycles, with their respective traffic violations, had to be auctioned off if they remained unclaimed after 6 months or more in accordance with Presidential Decree 1729.
LTO’s Special Legal Assistant, Atty. Alex Abaton, explains that the reason why some of the motorcycles, even with their dilapidated condition, have high starting bid prices, is that the agency had to include the unpaid fines in the bidding.
“Ang nagiging basehan natin dun sa pricing, iko-compute natin una, kung magkano yung violation committed, and then i-carry over dun yung fines and penalties and at the same time meron po storage fee na PHP 5.00 per day,” says Atty. Abaton.
(The bid prices are based on first, how much are the traffic violation fees, then the fines and penalties will be carried over and an additional storage fee of PHP 5.00/ day will be added.)
The LTO added that if these unclaimed impounded motorcycles are not sold at the auction, the agency, under its discretion, will donate them to another government agency like the Technical Skills Development Authority (TESDA) to put them into good use in the training of students.
LTO chief, Atty. Teofilo Guadiz III, says that the agency is now looking at options to lower some of the administrative fees of the unclaimed impounded motorcycles to make the bid prices more appealing to potential bidders.
“We will study the possibility of coming up with a fair assessment of a vehicle and its overall condition and considering other factors such as storage. By doing so, we hope to come up with a fair and reasonable market value that will serve as the floor price of an auctioned vehicle to make it more appealing to bidders,” said LTO Assistant Secretary Atty. Teofilo Guadiz III.