LTO to prioritize OFWs in issuing driver's license cards

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 1) — The Land Transportation Office (LTO) on Thursday said the remaining plastic cards for driver's license in their inventory will be dedicated to departing overseas Filipino workers (OFWs).

Based on estimates, there are only around 53,000 remaining plastic cards in all LTO satellite offices in the country.

During the Laging Handa public briefing, LTO officer-in-charge Hector Villacorta said he instructed the agency to prioritize departing OFWs since they will need it for work.

“Baka hindi tanggapin ng Saudi o Middle East o kung saan man ‘yung papel. Eh pupunta sila sa abroad para magtrabaho pero ‘yung lisensya baka hindi paniwalaan eh. We're talking to our regional directors to give priority to those traveling na driver ang occupation,” he said.

[Translation: Saudi Arabia or the Middle East may not recognize driver’s licenses printed on paper. These people will go abroad to work, but their licenses may not be acknowledged. We’re talking to our regional directors to give priority to those who will work as drivers abroad.]

Villacorta, the current Transportation assistant secretary for communication and commuter welfare, was appointed caretaker of the LTO following the resignation of Jay Art Tugade.

Tugade cited differences with Transportation Secretary Jimmy Bautista as the reason why he resigned.

Delays on procurement caused the depleting supply of plastic cards and blank plates.

On his first day in office, Villacorta said there are still fixers in their Diliman Field Office asking for around ₱2,000 fee to expedite the processing of documents.

Villacorta said he will talk to their frontline employees and tell them how serious they are in quashing corruption in the agency.