Tugade sacks entire staff of LTO branch in N. Vizcaya amid extortion complaints

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 08 2018 04:13 PM | Updated as of Apr 08 2018 07:35 PM

MANILA - The Department of Transportation (DOTr) has sacked all the employees of a branch of the Land Transportation Office (LTO) in Bayombong District and Aritao Extension in Nueva Vizcaya over their alleged involvement in extortion activities.

The DOTr said President Rodrigo Duterte himself heard complaints from rice traders and truckers about the employees of the LTO branch during a stakeholders' meeting in Malacañang last Thursday.

The complaint angered Duterte, prompting him to call Transportation Secretary Art Tugade, who then ordered the relief of the entire staff of the LTO branch while the agency probed the extortion allegations.

"Transportation Secretary Arthur P. Tugade swiftly ordered to relieve employees and personnel assigned at the Land Transportation Office Bayombong District Office and Aritao Extension Office, following numerous reports of extortion activities while in the conduct of enforcement," the DOTr said.

A new set of LTO personnel were designated in acting capacity to avoid delays in government transactions.

Tugade said this should be a warning to other government employees who are planning to engage in extortion activities.