DILG to local execs: Don’t overstep gov’t rules

April 01, 2020

INTERIOR Secretary Eduardo Año yesterday reiterated his strong warning to all local government officials that they should not implement rules in their areas which are beyond the guidelines of the inter-agency task force during the enhanced community quarantine period.

Año said Presdient Rodrigo Duterte wants local chief executives who overstep or do not follow the guidelines issued by the government to be put behind bars.

"Kapag meron pang sumuway diyan, isususpinde natin 'yan. Nagbigay ng instruction sa akin ang Pangulo kahapon, sinabihan niya ako na 'Kung sino pa 'yung matigas ang ulo diyan, mga local chief executive, sabihin mo agad sa akin, gusto ko ipakulong 'yan...'" Año said.

"So kailangan sumunod talaga itong local chief executives natin, 'yung tamang panuntunan dito sa IATF na inapprove ng Presidente..." he added.

Año, the vice chairman of the national action plan meant to reinforce measures against the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), said there are still local officials who impose their own regulations in their respective localities.

"Unang-una, inilabas natin ang mga guidelines through the IATF, ang gagawin lang naman ng LGU officials, basahin 'yan isa-isa at 'yung pagpapatupad mo dapat hindi ka sosobra diyan," Año said.

"Ngayon alam mo naman, meron tayong 42,000 barangays sa buong Pilipinas... kanya-kanyang autonomy sila at kanya-kanyang patupad eh 'yung iba sumusobra..." he added.

Año reiterated that barangays could not set up their own checkpoints. All checkpoints must be supervised by the Philippine National Police.

"Ang gagawin natin, hindi na natin papayagan 'yung mga barangays na mag-checkpoint along national highways and provincial highways," he said.

He added that the passage of basic goods, especially food and agricultural products, must be unhampered.

Duterte earlier instructed the Department of the Interior and Local Government and Department of Justice to monitor and study possible charges against local government officials who will fail to comply with the orders.