- Protocol Plates bearing number “8” will not be used in the next few weeks after a memorandum circular has been issued against it
- House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez ordered recall of plates after some cars bearing special plates were allegedly seen in indecent places
- Some lawmakers such as Rep. Toby Tiangco already lauded the Congress measure
Congressmen may soon be ditching their car plates bearing the number “8” due to a memorandum circular from House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez that was issued in the House of Representatives.
In the memo dated August 24, 2015, House Secretary General Cesar Pareja ordered lawmakers to turn all special protocol plates to his Office for proper acknowledgement. This order comes after reports that certain vehicles bearing the “8” plate have been spotted in indecent places or figured in crime-related activities. Pareja said Speaker Alvarez gave instructions for recall of all plates issued during the 16th Congress or earlier.
Lawmakers led by UNA Representative Toby Tiangco lauded the measure but assailed selectiveness in it.
In a social media post, Tiangco said “Bakit 16th Congress and earlier lang? Dapat pati 17th Congress. Hindi naman namin kailangan ng 8 na plaka para magserbisyo sa ating mga kababayan. At kung talagang seryoso tungkol dito, ipasa ang panukalang batas ko na nagbabawal sa 8 na plaka, para may parusa sa mga gagamit pa nito”.
[Why only 16th Congress and earlier? Should be 17th Congress, too. We don’t need plates bearing 8 to serve our fellowmen. And if they are really serious, the bill I passed should be approved so there would be punishment for violators.]
Tiangco even questioned why there’s no delay in the issuance of 8 plates but ordinary plates take five months before it is released. “It’s a symbol of special treatment and all the more should be removed”, referring to the LTO’s delay of issuance of normal car plates.
Car plates bearing the number “8” was traditionally used by current members of the Lower House. However, there have been allegations in the past that these are being used to show power, especially in traffic. No lawmaker has opposed the measure as of yet.