BACOLOD

Ordinance penalizing 'pabaya' parents hurdles first reading

THE Bacolod Council approved on first reading the proposed ordinance penalizing “pabaya” parents of minor children.

The proposed ordinance was authored by Councilor Renecito Novero, chairperson of the City Council committee on education.

Novero said “pabaya” refers to an Ilonggo colloquial term which connotes irresponsibility and neglect, which for purposes of the ordinance, shall include any act or commission of a parent which led to his/her minor child’s exposure to, or mingling with, the public without wearing face mask or observance of social distancing during the period of coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic.

He said this ordinance shall apply to all persons within the City of Bacolod, residents or non-residents, permanent, transient, or in transit and shall cease from being enforceable only when the state of emergency caused by Covid-19 has been lifted in the City. However, the lifting of the state of emergency on Covid-19 shall in no wise affect the continuing efficacy of this ordinance insofar as it concerns the violation of curfew ordinance in the city.

He added that any parent found guilty of violating the ordinance shall, after conviction by a competent court, suffer the fine of P2,000 and/or imprisonment not beyond three months, at the discretion of the court, if the minor child is within 13 to17 years of age, and P3,000 and/or imprisonment not beyond six months, at the discretion of the court, if the minor child is 12 years old or below.

Any parent convicted under this ordinance may exempt himself/herself from the penalty of fine and/or imprisonment by opting to render community service in the barangay where he/she resides for a period of here months at four hours per day excluding Saturday, Sunday and Holiday, to commence immediately after the promulgation of a sentence.

Any convicted parent who has earlier opted to render community service but, without justifiable cause, has failed to undertake and complete the same shall be liable to pay the fine and/or serve the full term of imprisonment adjudged of him/her.

A minor child, by whose parent’s act or omission, has been led to be exposed to, or mingled with the public without wearing face mask or observance of social distancing during the period of Covid-19 pandemic, or has been led to violating the curfew of the City shall, upon his/her apprehension and unless symptoms of Covid-19 infection, be immediately turned over to his/her parent for purposes of home quarantine for 14 days or within such period as may be necessary in accordance with the health protocol of the city under any given community quarantine status thereof.

Any such minor child exhibiting symptoms of Covid-19 infection, upon apprehension and with the strict observance of health protocol by the apprehending officer which shall include the wearing of personal protective equipment, shall be brought to the City Health Office for appropriate medical examination and treatment as determined by the City Health Officer or any of his/her authorized assistant.

Should the violation involving curfew ordinance after the emergency from Covid-19 has been lifted in the City, the minor child shall, after notifying his/her parent and the Punong Barangay of the Barangay where he/she resides, or in the latter’s absence, any barangay kagawad thereof, be immediately brought to the appropriate office of the Department of Social Welfare and Development or its equivalent in the City to be dealt with under the law and shall be turned over to his/her parent not later than 24 hours after his/her apprehension, the proposed ordinance stated.


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