Isko: Face masks now mandatory; Manila funeral parlors not accepting COVID-19 victims face penalties

Isko Moreno
Manila Mayor Isko Moreno Photo by JERRY S. TAN

FACE masks are now mandatory in Manila and funeral parlors not accepting bodies of COVID-19 victims face penalties.

This, after Mayor Isko Moreno announced having signed two ordinances passed by the Manila City Council providing for penalties for violators of the said measures.

Moreno commended the city council headed by Vice Mayor Honey Lacuna, president pro tempore Jong Isip and majority leader Joel Chua for the swift  passage of the said ordinances while the city government is fighting the virus and its adverse effects.

The ordinances were principally authored by Isip,Chua and Councilor Priscilla Marie Abante-Barquia and co-authored by all city councilors with the exception of first district Councilor Peter Ong.

Under the measure providing for the mandatory use of face masks in public,  all persons who are within the territorial jurisdiction of the City of Manila are required to use face masks while outside of their respective residences, offices and all other public places. The face mask must sufficiently cover one’s nose and mouth and must be worn at all times.

Moreno said that face masks, including ear loop masks, indigenous, reusable, do-it-yourself masks, handkerchiefs, or such other protective equipment that can effectively lessen the transmission of COVID-19.

First offense  carries a P1,000 penalty: second offense P2,000 and third and subsequent offense, P5,000.

Meanwhile, all funeral homes or funeral service facilities operating in the city  are mandated to provide logistical and transportation support to deceased COVID-19 patients whether positive or probable, when necessary including, but not limited to, the pick-up of the remains, subject to the policies and guidelines of the City of Manila, as well as those that will overcharge funeral services including, but not limited to, sale of coffins, cremation services and burial services.

Failure of a funeral home or funeral service facility to provide the mandated logistical and transportation support to a deceased COVID-19 patient shall be subject to the following penalties: first offense – suspension of business permit; second or subsequent offenses – cancellation of the business permit.

Moreno assured Manilans that the city government is doing everything within its means to address all problems relative to COVID-19.

He appealed once more to the residents to do their end of the bargain by following the enhanced home quarantine (ECQ) being required for everyone's safety.