DILG: LGUs determine guidelines for passes
Alicia Ivy L. Chua (The Freeman) - March 28, 2020 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — The distribution of community quarantine passes is the prerogative of the local government units (LGUs), the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) said.

Lawyer Ian Lucero, Local Government Monitoring and Evaluation Division chief at DILG-7, said the specific parameters for the passes are set by the LGUs themselves.

“As regards specifics – how to get the pass, who are qualified, who will issue—that’s LGUs’ prerogative,” he said.

The design of the passes and the process of distribution are also up to the LGUs, said Lucero.

The LGUS, he said, are ordered to regulate the movement of people as to prevent the further spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Different LGUs have started issuing community quarantine passes, following the national government’s directive that only one person per household is allowed to go outside to purchase basic necessities and provisions for food.

Quarantine passes are given to persons designated by their families to go out to buy supplies while a place is under a lockdown or enhanced community quarantine. Individuals are only allowed to leave their houses to buy food, medicine and other basic necessities.

This disallows other family members to buy goods and conduct transactions outside their homes.

Since Cebu City government, for instance, has declared an enhanced community quarantine, Lucero said it is tasked to regulate the mobility within the city.

“So the city should regulate and come up with measures to limit people’s movements,” he said.

Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella issued an executive order on March 26, declaring the city under a state of enhanced community quarantine  effective 12:00 noon of March 28 until 12:00 noon of April 28, “or unless sooner lifted or withdrawn.”

The order suspends all transportation, regulates provision for food and essential services, and heightens presence of uniformed personnel to enforce the quarantine procedures, among others.

If the barangays issue quarantine passes, Lucero said, they should be in consonance with the LGUs’ executive orders and the guidelines issued by the national government.

“The barangay chiefs should implement the EO and other laws to ensure smooth system and implementation,” he said.

Not for sale

Moreover, Lucero warned officials not to sell the passes.

“The passes are not for sale,” he said.

Lucero made the warning after a barangay captain in Marantao, Lanao del Sur was arrested for selling quarantine passes.

The arrest of Barangay Mantapoli chairman Cassar Abinal on March 22 came after DILG Secretary Eduardo Año warned that selling barangay quarantine clearances is illegal.  KQD (FREEMAN)

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