‘Ilocos Sur Anti-Driving Ordinance for Minors’ pushes for safe roads, responsible parenting

VIGAN CITY – Finally, a provincial ordinance will soon help end road accidents in the province wherein minors are involved.

To push for safe roads in the province, and responsible parenting the 9th Sangguniang Panlalawigan led by Vice Governor Jeremias C Singson, approved in its third reading the draft ordinance which shall be known as “Province of Ilocos Sur Anti-Driving Ordinance for Minors” authored by Sangguniang Panlalawigan Member Mildred Elaydo, chair of the Committee on Transportation, during its regular session last December 4, 2018.

“The ordinance targets the decrease of vehicular accidents, orderly implementation of traffic rules and regulations,” Elaydo said, “and the promotion of the safety, peace, comfort, convenience and general welfare of the riding public, the general public using the national, provincial, municipal or city, and barangay roads.”

“Because minors are involved, this ordinance calls for responsible parenting,” she added.

The ordinance prohibits minors to drive any kind of motor vehicle along the national, provincial, municipal or city, and barangays roads, except in cases when a parent or guardian who has a valid Professional or Non-professional Driver’s License accompanied a minor driving a motor vehicle with a student permit from the Land Transportation Office (LTO).

The ordinance prohibits a parent or guardian to permit a minor child to drive a motor vehicle. And it prohibits any person to lend his or her motor vehicle to a minor.

Elaydo said this ordinance is based on the UN Declaration of the Rights of the Child where the best interest of the child is the priority in enacting laws that would enable the child to enjoy special protection.

The government recognizes the vital role of children and youth in nation building, she added, and it shall promote and protect their physical, moral, spiritual, intellectual and social well- being.

Further she highlighted two national laws that helped her draft the ordinance. One is Presidential Decree No.603, the Child and Youth Welfare Code of the Philippines, Chapter IV Article 59 Section 11. This law provides criminal liability attached to the parents of a child who, under section 11, “Allows or requires the child to drive without a license or with a license which the parent knows to have been illegally procured. If the motor vehicle driven by the child belongs to the parents, it shall be presumed that he permitted or ordered the child to drive.”

The other national law is the New Civil Code of the Philippines, Article 2180, that states that parents shall be civilly liable for the injuries and damages caused by the acts or omissions of their unemancipated children living in their company and under their parental authority subject to the appropriate defenses provided by law.

To protect the province’s children, the Provincial Government of Ilocos Sur continues its programs to ensure the safety and well-being of the youth through a more proactive and preventive approach to secure the safety and passengers, especially children, by regulating the operation of motorcycles along roads and highways, Elaydo said.

Elaydo hopes that residents, particularly parents of minors, will help the provincial government, the PNP, LTO, and other concerned agencies and officers in the full and strict implementation of the ordinance. (Imelda Castro-Rivero/ PIA1 Ilocos Sur)