MANILA

DILG warns malls without health protocols would be closed

THE Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) said malls that do not comply with minimum health standards set by the Department of Health (DOH) would be closed.

DILG Secretary Eduardo Año said he has directed all local government units (LGUs) and the Joint Task Force Covid Shield to inspect malls for compliance to these health standards such as wearing of face masks, physical distancing and temperature checks.

“All chiefs of police and PCP (Police Community Precincts) commanders should make rounds of all malls prior to opening and during operating hours. If the malls are not able to comply with the minimum health standards, the PNP can close the malls and charge the mall owners with violation of the Bayanihan to Heal As One Act,” he said.

Año issued the directive after Metro Manila shifted Saturday, May 16, to modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ), which allows malls and selected industries to resume operations at limited capacity.

He said the NP will continue the conduct of checkpoints as well as the apprehension of unauthorized persons outside residence.

“The general rule continues to be ‘stay at home’ unless accessing essential services or going to work in permitted industries. Those found to be unauthorized will be fined, issued citation tickets, or detained if they refuse to go home,” he said.

“Hence, everyone must bring with them their government-issued ID cards or company IDs or other proofs of employment in industries allowed to operate so that the PNP will have a basis to allow you to go through,” he added.

He also said mobile checkpoints will be set up in strategic places to ensure compliance with community quarantine regulations.

He said LGUs should continue to enforce curfew hours as well as the issuance of quarantine passes to regulate the movement of people so long as these comply with valid exemptions granted by the IATF.

Aside from Metro Manila, other areas that are under MECQ from May 16 to May 31 are Laguna, Bataan, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga including Angeles City, and Zambales.

Only the cities of Cebu and Mandaue remain under ECQ. The rest of the country shifted to general community quarantine (GCQ). (SunStar Philippines)


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