Make it mandatory

April 17, 2020

THE public expects the national government to deliver on its promise to ensure the health, safety and welfare of the people, particularly the poor and other unfortunate members of society.

But as we try to address the national health emergency, which has paralyzed business operations in Luzon, local government units (LGUs) would do well to do their part in addressing COVID-19.

This, they will do by coming up with ordinances mandating residents to wear face masks every time they go out of their homes, according to the commander of the “Joint Task Force COVID Shield.”

Task Force head Lt/Gen. Guillermo Lorenzo T. Eleazar said ordinances would empower local police forces to go after hard-headed people, who leave their homes unprotected from the virus.

PNP chief General Archie Francisco F. Gamboa fully supports the mandatory wearing of face masks, said Eleazar, concurrently the deputy chief for operations of the national police agency.

The PNP, which is civilian in nature but national in scope, strictly implements ordinances imposing curfew hours, banning drinking and smoking in public places and the motorcycle helmet law.

The agency also enforces the law prohibiting riding-in tandem in motorcycles as part of the government’s social distancing measure to halt the spread of the corona virus, which originated from China.

Through quiet work, the 250,000-member PNP, which is under the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), is showing that it is always ready to advance the interests of the people.

There indeed is a need for LGUs to help the PNP in its war against COVID-19. Thus, local government authorities have no choice but to come up with ordinances needed to win the war against COVID-19.

And one of them is an ordinance seeking the mandatory wearing of face masks while Luzon and other parts of the Philippines are under the so-called Enhanced Community Quarantine.