QC gov’t to resume ban on plastic bags, single-use plastics on March 1

Robie de Guzman   •   February 16, 2021   •   561

The Quezon City government has announced it will resume the full implementation of the Ordinance 2868-2019, which bans the use of plastic bags and single-use plastics in the city.

In an advisory, the city government said the city-wide plastic bag ban will be imposed starting March 1.

The city already implemented the ban in January 2020 but was temporarily lifted in May through the issuance of the city’s Localized Guidelines for Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine (MECQ) and its succeeding versions.

“There is a pressing need to strengthen the city’s efforts in response to the global movement to reduce plastic wastes. Our call to action is also in fulfillment of the city’s international commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase climate resilience,” Mayor Joy Belmonte said in an earlier statement.

“With the re-implementation of the plastic bag ban, we hope to promote sustainable practices in the city,” she added.

Under a memorandum issued by Belmonte, all shopping malls, supermarkets, fast-food chains, drug stores, and other retailers registered under the Business Permits and Licensing Department (BPLD) should cease the distribution and/or provision of plastic bags to their customers.

“We will not allow the retailers to use plastic bags anymore at the check-out counters. Kailangan nang magdala ng mamimili ng sarili nilang reusable bags,” the mayor said.

The use of brown paper bags in groceries and other retail stores will only be allowed this year as it will be prohibited starting 2022 as part of the full implementation of the ordinance.

The local government urged the public to properly disinfect their reusable bags before and after use in groceries and markets.

“We are also encouraging the public to use their own eating utensils in their homes and offices as they consume their take away food,” the city government said.

The city will also be enforcing the ban on the distribution of disposable and single use plastics in restaurants and hotels for dine-in transactions starting July 1, 2021. Its implementation was also deferred through the MECQ guidelines.

As stated in City Ordinance 2876-2019, restaurants are prohibited from distributing single-use plastic/ disposable materials to their dine-in customers such as plastic spoon and fork, knives, plastic/ paper cups, plates, plastic/ paper straws, coffee stirrers and other disposable materials and styrofoam.

For food delivery and take away orders, food establishments are also encouraged to adopt a “by-request protocol,” where they ask their customers if they need single-use plastic utensils and condiment sachets before providing it to them.

Food delivery applications such as Grab Food and Food Panda are also requested to consider incorporating the protocol to positively contribute in the plastic waste reduction program of the city.

Meanwhile, hotels in the city will also be prohibited from distributing soap, shampoo, shower gels, liquid soap, conditioners, and other items used for hygienic purposes in sachets and single-use containers.

Restaurants and hotels will be required to submit their transition plans, including health and safety protocols, to the EPWMD on or before May 31, 2021, the city government said.

The city government said it will be deputizing enforcers to check each establishment’s compliance to the ordinances.

Businesses that fail to implement the law will be penalized with a fine of P1,000 for the first offense; P3,000 fine and revocation of environmental clearance and issuance of cease and desist order by the BPLD for the second offense; and a fine of P5,000 and revocation of the Business Permit and issuance of closure order for the third offense.

Davao City surpasses QC in average daily COVID-19 cases; records ‘very high’ positivity rate

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 8, 2021

Davao City has surpassed Quezon City in having high average daily cases of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), according to OCTA Research Group.

According to the research group, Davao City along with other areas in Mindanao, has recorded high growth rate in COVID-19 cases. Davao City has an average of 213 daily COVID-19 cases while Quezon City has 207.

Due to this the local government said it will conduct online consultations with doctors to discuss additional temporary treatment management facilities.

A business process outsourcing (BPO) company was also placed under lockdown after 403 employees tested positive for COVID-19. The Davao City local government will also conduct an investigation if the said BPO company had  violated public minimum health standards

Davao City Police Office (DCPO) Spokesperson Pcpt. Rose Aguilar reminded the public to follow minimum health protocols. Over 3,000 individuals have been apprehended for not wearing facemasks and face shields.

“Sumunod talaga tayo palagi sa health protocols at tayo mismo magbantay sa ating sarili, na hindi tayo makatabi o makalapit sa kapwa indibidwal. Ang ating facemask, face shield at paghuhugas ng kamay palagi nating gawin,” he said.

(Let us follow health protocols and we should be vigilant in maintaining physical distancing. Wear facemask, face shield, and wash your hands.)

Meanwhile, the local government will place additional temporary treatment management facilities due to bed shortage brought by the surge in COVID-19 cases. AAC (with reports from Marisol Montano)

QC to probe barangay captain, homeowner president for failure to report public gatherings

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 7, 2021

QUEZON CITY, Philippines — The Quezon City government will conduct an investigation against a barangay captain and and a homeowner association president for failing to report public gatherings.

Barangay Captain Allan Franza and Homeowners Association President Don Brabante of Matandang Balara will be facing probe for failing to prohibit or report a public gathering and a drinking session that led to the spread of COVID-19 to 72 residents.

City Mayor Joy Belmonte has also directed the City Legal Department to investigate other individuals involved in the superspreader event.

“The spread could’ve been prevented but we see that some people, including persons in authority, have started to become lax in the enforcement and practice of minimum health protocols. This should serve as a wake-up call for everyone to remain vigilant and wary of COVID-19. The virus is still very much in our environment and we are counting on everyone’s cooperation,” she said.

City Legal Officer Attorney Orlando Paolo Casimiro said his office has issued a show cause order to Franza for him to explain why he should not be held criminally and administratively liable due to the reported superspreader event.

The agency also filed a complaint against Brabante for violation of health protocols and permitting a social gathering beyond what is allowable by the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID).

Based on the report by the City Epidemiology and Disease Surveillance Unit (CESU), a total of 255 residents of Area 7, Matandang Balara were swabbed and among these, 72 were confirmed positive. AAC

Cop to face murder charges after shooting woman at point blank range in QC

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 1, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—A police officer will face murder charges after shooting a woman at point blank range in Quezon City on Monday (May 31), according to Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief PGen. Guillermo Eleazar.

Master Sergeant Hensie Zinampan was captured on video that showed him shooting 52-year-old Lilibeth Valdez in the neck on Monday evening. Reports say Zinampan had a previous argument with Valdez’ son.

During a media briefing on Tuesday (June 1), Eleazar reported that the suspect  already admitted to the crime.

The PNP Chief condemned the said shooting and ordered the Internal Affairs Service to investigate the incident. Apart from the murder charges, Zinampan will also face administrative charges.

The suspect is assigned to the Philippine National Police – Police Security and Protection Group. He is currently detained at the Criminal Investigation and Detection Unit (CIDU) in Camp Karingal. AAC (with reports from Lea Ylagan)



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