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Heeding the pronouncement of the President that the worsening traffic condition in the metropolis was a sign of economic progress, the Congress enacted Republic Act No. 10701 (RA 10701), also known as An Act Imposing a Transport Tax on the Purchase of Private Vehicles.
Under RA 10701, buyers of private vehicles are required to pay a transport tax equivalent to 5°/o of the total purchase price per vehicle purchased. RA 10701 provides that the Land Transportation Office (LTO) shall not accept for registration any new vehicles without proof of payment of the 5% transport tax. RA 10701 further provides that existing owners of private vehicles shall be required to pay a tax equivalent to 5% of the current fair market value of every vehicle registered with the LTO. However, RA 10701 exempts owners of public utility vehicles and the Government from the coverage of the 5% transport tax.
A group of private vehicle owners sue on the ground that the law is unconstitutional for contravening the Equal Protection Clause of the Constitution.
Rule on the constitutionality and validity of RA 10701. (5%)