Sen. Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr. today welcomed the government’s deferment of the mandatory cashless toll collection on expressways but maintained that issues on the installation and availability of radio-frequency identification stickers should be addressed.
“Salamat sa extension. Malaking bagay ‘yan. Pero magiging balewala kung hindi pa rin aayusin ng mga tollway operators ang sistema sa pagkuha ng RFID (Thank you for the extension, it’s a huge help. But it will be for naught if toll operators do not fix the process in getting the RFID),” Revilla, vice chairperson of the Senate public services committee, said.
The Department of Transportation has moved the implementation of the cashless toll collection from Nov. 2 to Dec. 1 to give more time for motorists to attach RFID stickers on their vehicles and avoid long queues on toll roads.
The DOTr said this will no longer be extended and those who do not have the RFID stickers will be issued citation tickets for disregarding traffic signs or obstruction.
Revillar had earlier cited complaints from motorists about the shift to cashless payments in toll roads, particularly the congestion in installation centers and unavailability of RFID stickers. He said there were reports that fixers offer RFID stickers for motorists at higher prices.
“Napakarami naming natatanggap na reklamo tungkol sa mga nagaalok magkabit ng RFID sa halagang P250 para sa sticker na P100 lang ang load. At hindi sila nauubsan ng supply. Nakapagtataka kung saan sila kumukuha ng RFID, tapos ang mga motorista walang makuha (I have received complaints regarding fixers offering to install RFID with a P100 load for P250. They don’t run out and I wonder where they get their supply which motorists don’t have),” he said.
He urged anew tollway operators Metro Pacific Tollways Corp. (MPTC) and San Miguel Corp. (SMC) to address issues in its installation of RFID stickers.
“Hanggat hindi sila nagdadagdag ng mga installation center na hindi kinakapos sa RFID, hangga’t hindi nila inaalis ang mga fixer na wala nang inabangan kung hindi ang cut-off ng mga installation center ay hindi magiging maayos ang lahat (Everything is in disarray unless they add installation centers that don’t lack RFIDs and remove these fixers),” he said.