The Department of Transportation and Communication (DOTC) in the Cordillera has been in the limelight for a good number of years due to issues confronting the agency for quite some time in the late 1990s and the early 2000. One such issue was on alleged fraudulently-issued franchises or certificates of public convenience (CPCs) for public utility vehicles that led to the issuance of a moratorium on the grant of franchises to PUVs plying the different routes in the city aside from taxi units. This allowed the agency to conduct an inventory on the real number of legitimately-issued franchises for PUVs in the city.

Officials of the DOTC-CAR had been changing but similar issues have cropped up and resurrected that placed the concerned officials and the agency in a bad light. Too much publicity with some issues blown out of proportion resulted to the discrediting of a good number of respected individuals who may have just as well make good what they were accused of, and some were just victims of circumstances with their detractors being influential and have the resources to turn things around in their favor even if their allegations did not warrant merit. A good number of officials who were assigned in the agency chose to give up their juicy positions because they could not swallow the blatant corruption inside the agency, especially in relation to matters on franchising, while others were harassed, intimated and maligned with the filing of unnecessary charges just for their detractors to be able to continue their willful illegal acts.

Some lawyers, young and old, were able to make a living out of the existence of legal and questionable franchises of PUVs in the city for over a decade now and they continue to do so in cahoots with some erring officials and employees of the agency amidst the stern warning of President Rodrigo R. Duterte against corruption. It seems that the heat is still on on these  controversial issues that have confronted the agency through the years. The reorganization of the former DOTC to the now Department of Transportation (DOTr) after its communication function was transferred to the now Department of Information and Communication Technology (DICT) over a year ago did not actually able to stamp out the problem on franchising, among others.

The complaints still exist even if the agency’s leaders come from the Cordillera or from outside the region that is why there is a need for an iron hand from higher authorities to steer the agency to the right direction and put an end to tiring issues on fraudulently issued franchises for PUVs, especially taxis and jeepneys.

We support the leadership of the DOTr because even if regional director Jose Eduardo Natividad does not publicly make known his actions, he enjoys the support of his co-workers. We really need teamwork and cooperation of the agency officials and employees for it to succeed in the implementation of the needed reforms that will improve the image of the agency.

We wish to remind old and new officials  that they must contribute to the clean-up of the agency. Especially for those in leadership positions, like deputies, their actions must support this goal instead of exacerbating it. We are hearing experiences of name-dropping, extortion, the impounding of registered PUVs, and more. It seems the dirty business in franchising has reared its ugly head. What is new in Cordillera office of the DOTr that these are happening?

We urge all those who are experiencing these illegal activities to come out and file the appropriate charges. We strongly urge this Duterte administration to make good on its declaration to stamp out corruption by investigate the shenanigans going on in this office which is causing demoralisation among the honest government workers. We want these honest workers to make a stand against corruption in the agency for if they do not, they are part of the problem.

. Again, rid the DOTr of corruption, honest workers, the victims, and higher-ups must all act against this bane in the public service. No to corruption!


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