By Chito A. Chavez
Car owners, beware if you happen to be in Quezon City.
Under a 2004 city ordinance authored by then councilor Ariel Inton, illegally parked vehicles in Quezon City “shall be treated as common or ordinary garbage and shall be disposed of as such.”
Inton, now head of the Quezon City Task Force for Transport and Traffic Management, must have been carried away by this ordinance after being caught on video smashing the window of a vehicle parked on a sidewalk on Timog Avenue.
His act drew various reactions, mostly unfavorable.
Some denounced Inton’s act, branding it as an arrogant display of his perceived power and authority on the streets. Others, however, simply shrugged it off as being caught in a mounting pressure to meet the September 29 deadline to clear government properties of all sorts of obstructions as ordered by the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG).
But Inton was commended for apologizing on national television on Thursday, admitting overdoing it.
He said the unfortunate incident was a judgment call, saying he was sorry for being wrong.
Inton also apologized to the family of ABS-CBN reporter Angel Movido, who happened to own the car.
Inton said his office also keeps a list of illegally parked vehicles and consults village officials before towing operations.
To further explain his act, Inton noted that the 2004 city ordinance allows local authorities to confiscate vehicles parked on streets and other public places.
Inton explained that he smashed the car window merely to unlock it so that it would not be damaged when towed.
Admitting his lapse in judgment, Inton said one tends to be carried away even when you are in control.
Quezon City is one of the cities facing difficulty in clearing public places of obstructions having the biggest land area in Metro Manila.