Complainants won’t pursue legal action

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Friday, May 16, 2014


THE Cebu City Legal Office has received more complaints against business establishments that refuse to give discounts to senior citizens.

The legal office, though, is withholding the names of the establishments until they are issued a notice for clarificatory hearings.

No charges will be filed against the first three of five establishments summoned by the legal office after they reportedly violated provisions of Republic Act 9994, or the Expanded Senior Citizens’ Act of 2010.

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The first clarificatory conference was conducted yesterday where owners and representatives of Platinum Nail and Spa in Mabolo, Carland Caltex Services Station on N. Bacalso Ave. and Rose Pharmacy on Colon St. were made to appear to explain their side.

Florabel Zagado, a pharmacist from Rose Pharmacy, said they couldn’t give Fabiano Sanson the 20-percent senior citizen discount because of an incorrect prescription.

Sanson filed a complaint against the pharmacy before the Office of the Senior Citizens Affairs.

Under the law, Zagado said a doctor should include in the prescription the generic brand of the medicine aside from the medicine brand and name.

She said a sample of a correct prescription is posted in different branches of the pharmacy.

Before the law was implemented, Zagado said they were well-oriented with the policy given they deal with the elderly.

Exempted

“I was trying to explain to him (Sanson) why we refused to give him his discount but he chose not to buy his medicines anymore,” she told the hearing body.

Platinum Nail and Spa, for its part, said wellness center that operates separately is not mandated to give a discount to seniors.

Under the law’s implementing rules and regulations, only hotel-based spas are mandated to give the discount, City Legal Officer Jerone Castillo confirmed.

“We should consider some technicalities of the law,” he said.

Castillo said seniors should be educated about the law that covers the giving of their privileges.

After the establishments gave their explanations, the complainants agreed not to pursue any legal action, Castillo said.

The city attorney warned other establishments to follow the law as they might not be exempt.

Two more establishments, Yaki House Restaurant in Banilad and La Nueva Pharmacy, were issued notices and have been ordered to appear in a clarificatory conference on Monday.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on May 16, 2014.

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