Impounded vehicle owners snub amnesty scheme

Impounded vehicle owners snub amnesty scheme

OWNERS of motor vehicles whose units have been impounded in Mandaue City have only until Oct. 31, 2023 to claim their units by paying a reduced storage rate.

However, only seven percent of the impounded vehicles were claimed as of Monday, Oct. 2, as some owners found it impractical to claim their units.

After the City’s amnesty program expires, the regular daily storage fee of P100 will apply, making it crucial to act promptly to avoid higher fees, said a Mandaue City official.

City Councilor and transportation committee chairman Jimmy Lumapas urged vehicle owners on Monday, Oct. 2, to take advantage of the opportunity, stressing there will be no extension for the leeway.

Under the amnesty, drivers whose vehicles get impounded can claim their unit and pay only a P1,000 storage fee regardless of the number of years the vehicular units were impounded plus an amount as a penalty for other violations that resulted in the impounding and towing of their vehicles.

The amnesty, however, covers only those vehicles impounded from January 2020 to December 2022.

P100 daily storage fee

Lumapas said the P100 daily storage fee for motorcycles- and P500 for four-wheeled vehicles will apply once the amnesty expires.

It means owners of motorcycles confiscated three years ago will pay more or less a P100,000 storage fee and auto drivers about P500,000 plus the other fines.

Majority unclaimed

As of Monday, the Traffic Enforcement Agency of Mandaue (Team) released only about seven percent of the impounded vehicles since the ordinance took effect on Aug. 1.

The number translates to only 55 released vehicles out of the total 700 impounded vehicles. Some 645 vehicles remain unclaimed at the Team’s impounding area in Barangay Centro.

Lost interest

Lumapas said many drivers have not shown interest in claiming their impounded vehicles due to various reasons.

For some, their vehicles require significant repairs, while others have purchased the impounded vehicles on an installment basis but have not yet fully paid for them. Additionally, many drivers lack the funds needed to pay the required fees and penalties.

Motorcycle dealers can now claim units on their buyers’ behalf with the same requirements as regular claimants and pay for pending traffic violations.

Public auction

Hyl Retuya, Team’s legal and administration head, said the vehicles will be available for claiming until the Mandaue City Traffic Board declares them abandoned and opened for public auction.

Retuya said the revenues from the auction, traffic violations, and the amnesty program would go on the Team’s supply purchasing, mobile assets, traffic lights and maintenance equipment purchases, and other programs.

He said Team has collected around P100,000 in payments as of Monday.

City Ordinance 211-2023, also known as the Amnesty Program, was crafted in July by Lumapas to help decongest the “very full” Mandaue impounding area in Barangay Centro.

The Team said 95 percent of the impounded vehicles are private vehicles, while the rest are public utility vehicles.

Among the reasons these were impounded were due to fake, expired, or lack of license. 

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