BAGUIO CITY – Operators of various insurance companies within the compound of the Land Transportation Office (LTO) trooped to the City Council to seek the assistance of members of the local legislative body to put an end to the alleged harassment they continue to encounter from an official of the Cordillera office of the Department of Transportation and Railways (DOTR-CAR).
The concerned stakeholders, including owners of companies selling taxi meters and other related businesses and those maintaining legal and medical offices, complained of alleged favouritism being practiced by DOTR-CAR Assistant Regional Director Datu Mahamad Naser Abbas who allegedly plays favorite with two insurance companies for motor vehicles being registered and reportedly harasses those who do not adhere to his own style of administering the office.
Further, physicians maintaining medical offices in the compound complained their staff had been allegedly accused by the DOTR-CAR official as fixers and that they had been reportedly shown firearms as harassment.
Those complaining against the alleged abusive acts and corrupt activities of Abbas claimed that the DOTR-CAR official continues to harass them by showing off his firearm and reportedly threatens them.
According to them, Abbas tasked several individuals to be his runners from the LTO office to his chosen insurance firms for the issuance of insurance policies for vehicle owners having their vehicles registered, thereby depriving other insurance companies an equal opportunity to insure vehicles.
Aside from the complainants of alleged abuse of authority and reported corruption already lodged with the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), the Civil Service Commission (CSC) and the LTO Central Office, the complainants claimed there were also five incidents in the LTO compound where Abbas allegedly threatened individuals whom he suspects as fixers and that one of his victims is a lady employee of a medical office.
Rose Malaga, who had been allegedly handing over to Abbas his supposed share from the insurance companies that were able to insure registered motor vehicles, claimed she was even accused by the DOTR-CAR officials of being dishonest when she remitted to him only P3,500 instead of the usual P8,000 to P10,000 per day, and caused her to stop her routine and return to simply being an employee of an insurance firm in the vicinity of the LTO compound.
The complainants claimed that since Abbas assumed office in the region the equitable sharing of clients by the insurance companies operating within the LTO compound had been derailed because of his reported practice of favoritism wherein only two insurance companies are being prioritized by his runners to transact business with the said office.
The concerned stakeholders claimed that those who purchase insurance from other than the two companies encounter delays in their transactions with the LTO while those who purchase insurance from them experience better treatment from the LTO personnel.