MANILA – President Rodrigo Duterte has signed an executive order banning smoking in public places nationwide, officials confirmed Thursday.
Speaking to ABS-CBN News, Health Secretary Paulyn Ubial said Duterte signed the executive order last May 16. Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea also confirmed that Duterte already signed the EO.
Ubial said the signing of Executive Order 26 was made in time for the celebration of World No Tobacco Day on May 31.
Ubial has yet to provide details on the EO on smoking ban policy, which the government had planned to pattern after the one in place in Davao City.
In January, Ubial said Duterte had asked her to draft the executive order similar to what the city had been implementing on “100% smoke-free environment in 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 had said.
“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.”
“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 added.
The EO, Ubial had said, is a clear signal to the members of the branch to implement systems and information drives to work together to be able to prevent children, the poor, and the public from smoking in public places.
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