Mayor WES Gatchalian disagrees with Land Transportation Office (LTO) chief and Department of Transportation (DOTr) Assistant Secretary Teofilo Guadiz III’s call to suspend the implementation of the No Contact Apprehension Policy (NCAP) in cities where it is in effect.
Following Cadiz III’s call Gatchalian said that suspending NCAP will do more harm than good. He reiterated that the NCAP is a measure meant to lessen human subjectivity and to make traffic management more efficient and graft-free, eliminating the temptation from the traffic enforcers to engage in corrupt activities, such as bribery or kotong.
Traffic apprehension in the City will be back to its gruesome heydays even in a single day of its suspension. The traffic discipline that has been instilled among Valenzuelano motorists will be gone to naught. The NCAP has also been instrumental in avoiding road rage arguments. For instance, imprudent violating drivers may be back to subjecting the City’s traffic enforcers to awful harrasments – verbal and emotional abuse, physical injuries, and other similar acts.
Citing Cadiz’s points for the urge to suspend NCAP, such as complaints of operators of public utility vehicles that they are the ones who are forced to pay the fines for traffic violations committed by their drivers, and if the vehicle is already sold to another individual and the transfer of ownership is not yet registered with the LTO the previous owner receives the notice of violation, Gatchalian emphasized that the City has an active Traffic Violation Adjudication Committee where they can formally lodge their objection or complaint against the notice of violation. If they feel they were erroneously apprehended, they can do so within five (5) working days upon its receipt. Exemption to fines, however, is warranted only under the following circumstances: if the vehicle was stolen at the time the violation was committed, the driver is not the owner, if the vehicle was already sold to another party, and during emergency.
Instead of suspending NCAP, Gatchalian laid down suggestions for improvement of the system, including making it a Metro-wide initiative with uniform fines, uniform rules, and strengthening a uniform adjudication committee.
Operators may also report their erring driver to the LTO for adjudication and to transfer the record of NCAP violation so that the agency may suspend or hold the renewal of their driver’s license until the fines were settled.
Valenzuela City NCAP was launched in September 2019 with the full suport from the DOTR and the LTO. To date the system has helped apprehend a total of 201,037 erring motorists, most of whom are non-Valenzuela residents from neighboring localities.
Currently, Valenzuela City NCAP utilizes 47 high speed camera systems with full high definition technology installed in key intersections in the city which detects traffic violators and captures their vehicles’ plate numbers. Similar technology is being used in developed countries across the globe, such as the United States, Europe and other parts of Asia.
Gatchalian advises motorists that there is only one way to avoid charges, that is – to simply adhere to the traffic rules.