By: Emme Rose Santiagudo
ILOILO CITY Anti-Smoking Task Force (ICAST) executive director Iñigo Garingalao wants barangays officials to partner with them in the campaign on anti-smoking to achieve a “smoke-free” city.
According to Garingalao, they have done overtures but at times it is a challenge for them to enforce the campaign since most of the violations are in the barangay levels.
“Subong nga may mga newly elected, sundon naton ang law. Mag-hambal gani nga ordinance, indi lang na sa city hall, it involves the whole. As officials, ka-intindi ta sang implications sina kay kung magmasalakit sila, dira man sila sa aton gadalagan. Dapat himuon ta ang nagaka-dapat,” Garingalao said.
He also noted that “smoke-free” is a complete advocacy that is not just based on mere apprehensions.
“When you say ‘Smoke-Free’ indi lang na dakpanay, it includes advocacy, kids up to college. May advocacy not to sell, advocacy kung ano mag-bato sa ginahimo sang tobacco industry, and cigarette companies,” he said.
Garingalao also advised barangay officials to go the ICAST office and ask for “no-smoking” signage.
“Panapik kamo sa stores sang no smoking kag tapos kuhaon niyo ang abridged ordinance nga gin-summarize namon kag panghatag sa mga stores para ma aware sila na indi pwede ibaligya sa bata kag bawal magpatambay sang ga-smoke,” he explained.
He added that barangay officials should draft resolution against smoking and adopt it in their respective barangays.
“Under sa Executive Order ni President Duterte nga Executive Order No. 26, nag-state gid nga mabulig sila kag, in fact, it is the local task force and the PNP who will enforce this and may component gid sang barangay officials,” he added.
ICAST also reminded the barangay officials that they have a responsibility to their constituents.
“You pledged to protect your constituents and anti-smoking is protection against the ill effects of smoking especially sa kabataan,” Garingalao noted.
In 2014, the Comprehensive Anti-Smoking Ordinance of Iloilo City was drafted and amended to include the prohibition on vaping and cigarettes sale within a 100-meter radius from schools, hospitals, public plazas, government buildings and clinics, and laboratories.
Under the ordinance, sari-sari stores are prohibited from using posters and drop boxes of cigarette companies’ promotions.
Any establishment caught violating the ordinance will be fined P2,000 on the first offense; P3,000 on the second offense and one-week suspension or cancellation of the permit, and P5,000 on third offense and revocation of the permit.