I WAS discharged from the hospital last Thursday after three days of confinement. Last Monday afternoon, upon the advice of my physician Cecille Cabias Jaca, I decided to have myself confined in the hospital after feeling severe dizziness and vomiting. Thank God, except for the “common ailments”—glucose (blood sugar), uric acid, cholesterol and hypertension, which are above tolerable levels—all my laboratory results, such as the electronic cardiogram (ECG) and echocardiogram, chest X-ray, computerized tomography (CT) scan, ultrasound results (liver, kidney and prostate), turned out to be normal. Pasalamat gyud ta sa Ginoo nga mao ra ni mga sakit nato itandi sa uban nga mas grabe.
Yesterday, despite being in the process of physical recovery and since I was on sick leave, I took the opportunity to visit the Land Transportation Office (LTO 7) satellite office at the Robinsons Galleria to get my plastic driver’s license. It has been seven months since I renewed my license during my birthday last August at the Robinsons Fuente. But I was not able to acquire the plastic license since the Robinsons Fuente office did not have a data capturing machine.
Expecting the office to open on time, I went there at around 8 a.m. only to be told by security guards on duty that the licensing office would open at 10 when the shopping mall also opened. I waited for almost two hours reading newspapers at the House of Lechon restaurant owned by my friend, Bunny Pages. It’s good that the manager and the waiters allowed me and the other applicants to occupy their tables and chairs outside. Wala pa hinoon mga customers kay sayo pa man.
When the mall opened, I went to the fourth floor where the licensing office was located. There were already lots of people lining up to secure priority numbers. I got one and my number was 90. I filled up a form where I attached my temporary license. There were only four personnel with two data capturing machines serving about 300 applicants that they could accommodate daily. Senior citizens also lined up as there was no express lane for them.
My number was called past 2 p.m. Imagine, I waited for five hours, excluding the two hours before the mall opened. I underwent the procedure for the data/photo capturing machine, electronic signature and finger pinting, which I already went through when I renewed my license at the Robinsons Fuente. Gibalik ra gihapon. Sus, morag kaduha ta molukat. Kahasol. I thought we would only present our temporary license and we could get the plastic. That’s it. After the procedure, I waited for half an hour until my plastic license was released. Based on my experience, an applicant spends at least half a day to one day to renew his/her driver’s license. So if you are an employee, you should file a leave of absence from work for at least one day. Sa kadto ra nang ma-accommodate nga 300. Aw, kung dili ka ma-accommodate, balik na pod ka pagka-ugma. Gasto pa ka paniudto ug snacks.
Why did applicants at Robinsons Fuente go through the same procedure? LTO 7 Director Victor Caindec, in an interview several months ago when I raised this issue in my radio program, said the agency could not provide machines at Robinsons Fuente. He said they would possibly face graft and corruption charges if they provided the machines for Robinsons Fuente. Why? Can’t your private service supplier at Robinsons Fuente provide one? Applicants will still have to go to either the LTO regional office, SM Seaside or Robinsons Galleria to process their plastic license. If that is the case, then LTO should not accredit or it should close the service provider at Robinsons Fuente. What’s the use? Gihasol-hasol ra ninyo nang mga applicants. Maayo ra man god nig panghambog si Caindec. Estorya ray gaayo. Mag-apil-apil pa sa mga political issues diri sa siyudad unya wala maka-sulbad sa problema sa iyang buhatan. Inutil.