- President to sign DOH EO banning smoking in public places throughout PH
- Public places included in ban are parks, bus stations and vehicles
- Designated smoking areas in public establishments also to be prohibited
MANILA, Philippines – Smokers may soon be limited to the privacy of their homes for their fix as Cabinet officials announced the signing by President Rodrigo Duterte of an Executive Order banning smoking in all public places nationwide this week.
According to Health Secretary Paulyn Ubial, the EO will order government agencies and LGUs to enforce the ban on all public places.
“The executive order will actually mandate all the agencies of government, including the local government to implement this 100% smoking ban in all public places. It’s not just Metro Manila,” she told ABS-CBN. “There will be no smoking in public places anymore, whether indoor or outdoor. Parks, bus stations, and even in vehicles. All these are considered public places.”
Vaping, as well as designating smoking areas, are likewise included in the ban.
Ubial said Duterte expects local officials to comply with the EO which was drafted by the Department of Health.
“It’s an order to the executive branch. It’s up to the local government units also to draft their, shall we call, ordinances to implement this executive order. It’s different from a law,” she said.
Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol said the president told Ubial to use the DOH-drafted EO in toto.
“He told Secretary Ubial to stick to the draft EO which DOH prepared,” he said.
Duterte, a smoker for several years before he quit the habit, had aggressively implemented a smoking ban in Davao City when he was still mayor.