LGUs ordered to strictly enforce smoking ban this Christmas

MANILA -- The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has ordered all local government units to strictly enforce the smoking ban in government offices, schools, hospitals, and other public and enclosed places this Christmas season.

In a statement, the DILG said Officer-in-Charge Catalino S. Cuy had prompted local chief executives to ensure the implementation of Executive Order No. 26, which provides the establishment of smoke-free environments in public and enclosed places.

"While Christmas parties and get-togethers have been part of our Yuletide celebrations, we do not want the party-goers to suffocate or develop lung diseases from inhaling cigarette or tobacco smoke while enjoying the party or while traveling to or from the Christmas events using public transportation, Cuy said in a statement Monday.

On May 16, 2017, President Rodrigo Duterte issued EO No. 26 in fulfillment of his campaign promise to implement a nationwide smoking ban the same way he did in Davao City when he was still a mayor.

EO 26 provides stricter policies and measures for smoking in public places and public conveyances, distribution or purchase of tobacco products, and advertisements and promotional materials of tobacco products.

EO 26 must be complied with. This is not just a suggestion or recommendation. There are corresponding penalties to the violators, so we are urging all to abide by the law, Cuy said.

The following acts are declared unlawful and prohibited under EO 26:

* Smoking within enclosed public places and public conveyances, whether stationary or in motion, except in fully-compliant designated smoking areas (DSAs);

* Allowing, abetting, or tolerating smoking in prohibited places by persons-in-charge;

* Selling, distributing, or purchasing tobacco products to and from minors;

* Smoking, selling, or buying cigarettes and other tobacco products;

* Ordering, instructing, or compelling a minor to use, light up, buy, sell, distribute, deliver, advertise, or promote tobacco products;

* Selling or distributing tobacco products in school, public playground, youth hostels, and recreational facilities for minors, including those facilities frequented by minors, or within 100 meters from any point of the perimeter of these places;

* Placing, posting, displaying, or distributing advertisement and promotional materials of tobacco products;

* Placing tobacco advertisements outside the premises of point-of-sale retail establishments; and

* Placing any stall, booth, and other displays concerning tobacco promotions to areas outside the premises of point-of-sale or adult-only facilities.

Source: Philippine News Agency