ALCOHOLIC beverages will once again be available to the public as Davao City will issue an executive order lifting the 24-hour liquor ban starting September 21.
However, Davao City Mayor Sara Z. Duterte-Carpio said beerhouses, clubs and bars will remain closed, based on the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Guidelines on establishments allowed to operate under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ).
"Wala nato gi-lift ang [24-hour] liquor ban para sa inyoha [drinkers], gi-lift nato ang liquor ban para sa mga negosyo ug sa mga tao nga ga-trabaho sa liquor business. Dili ni tungod aron sa inyong kalipay, kon dili para sa negosyo ni," Duterte-Carpio said in an interview via 87.5 FM Davao City Disaster Radio on Friday, September 11.
(We will not be lifting the 24-hour liquor ban due to public clamor. We do this for businesses and those whose livelihood and work are related to the liquor business. We are not doing this to satisfy your thirst for alcohol, but to revive the economy.)
Initially, the mayor said the lifting of the liquor ban, along with the reopening of the Roxas Night Market, was slated on September 1, but it was postponed.
The mayor also earlier said the lifting of the liquor ban might be scheduled in October to give way for the opening of the night market, which resumes on September 12.
“We will do it gradually. We will reopen this one first and then we will see. If the cases will go up, then we will regroup, rearrange and re-coordinate on what we will do if, God forbid, that will happen,” Duterte-Carpio said.
Meanwhile, the mayor still discouraged the public from having drinking sessions as there is still the threat of Covid-19.
She had previously received reports of Covid-19 transmission through drinking sessions, which is considered as a form of mass gathering.
The mayor also said the public is not allowed to drink liquor in public, meaning they have to drink within the confines of their residences.
Duterte-Carpio on March 18 implemented extended hours for the liquor ban in the city due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
This was eventually upgraded into a 24-hour ban in early April this year when the city declared an enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).
The order states that establishments are prohibited from selling liquors and other alcoholic beverages. Consumers were also not allowed to drink even in establishments.
The 19th Council institutionalized penalty for liquor ban violators during the Covid-19 pandemic in late March this year.
Meanwhile, Vices Regulation Unit (VRU) head Dr. Ashley Lopez said once the lifting of the 24-hour liquor ban will be formalized through an executive order, the city's existing liquor ban, based on Ordinance 004-13, will still be in effect.
Lopez said that once the mayor, through an executive order, will issue the lifting of the liquor ban, Ordinance 004-13 or the ordinance "regulating the operation of business establishments selling liquors, coconut wine, and other natural wine and other alcoholic beverages in the city of Davao" immediately takes effect.
According to the ordinance, the liquor ban will be from 1 a.m. to 8 a.m.
SunStar File Photo
September 11, 2020
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