DOJ supports removing additional testing for driver's license renewal

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has expressed support for a lawmaker's measure to remove the additional testing prerequisite for renewing driver's licenses. The requirement in question involves taking and completing the Land Transportation Office's (LTO) Comprehensive Driver's Education (CDE) program.

House Resolution No. 2325 comes from Deputy Speaker Rufus Rodriguez of Cagayan de Oro, and it urges the LTO and the Department of Transportation (DOTr) to "immediately remove the additional requirement of acquiring a certification of completion of the comprehensive driver’s education (CDE) for people renewing their driver’s licenses.”

According to the CDE regulations set by the LTO, testers can take and be issued certificates of completion through LTO-accredited driving schools. These driving schools typically charge test takers anywhere between P3,000 to P5,000.

The DOJ, through Undersecretary Emmeline Aglipay Villar, has welcomed the resolution. The department maintained that the CDE requirement is "a function necessary, proper and incidental to the power of the LTO to issue driver’s licenses."

However, the DOJ also says the CDE is "a function that properly pertains to the LTO, and it is not contemplated by EO No. 1101, series of 1985, that said function be performed by an LTO-accredited driving school or institution... For this reason, we support the adoption of House Resolution 2325."

Notably, Executive Order No. 1101 created the Land Transportation Commission, which later became the LTO. As for the CDE, Rep. Rodriguez stated his concern regarding the viability of the requirement, which could prove detrimental to controlling the spread of COVID-19, as it would encourage people to crowd into license renewal centers en masse. 

Rodriguez also mentioned the exorbitant pricing of the CDE, which could be out of reach for many Filipinos, especially drivers of public utility vehicles (PUVs).

Despite the House's resolution, the LTO has yet to take action on the matter, and it's not yet known whether the office plans to suspend the CDE requirement for license renewal. 

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