Fines from smoking ordinance reached P1.8-M since April 2017

THE VICES Regulation Unit (VRU) has said the local government already earned around P1.8 million in four months as it continues to implement the Comprehensive Anti-Smoking Ordinance.

VRU chief Voltaire Engracia said the total fines translate to around 9,000 violators of the city’s strict anti-smoking ban.

Engracia added that the local government is also considering going after vendors of cigarettes, including mobile vendors such as those sold in takatak boxes.

According to Engracia, the selling of cigarettes in non-smoking areas could be cited under the local ordinance.  However, the unit has not yet fleshed out the details of this implementation.

Engracia said the unit has asked the barangays to strengthen the implementation of the ordinance. This means that the tanods, or volunteer security personnel, will include in their job description the monitoring of people who are violating the ordinance.

The ordinance already has strict measures prohibiting even the lighting of cigarettes at stores.

Smokers are covered by three regulations prohibiting smoking.

Republic Act 9211, for example, is a national law prohibiting smoking in public areas.

The local ordinance, meanwhile, is stricter as it bans practices not currently part of the national law. These include the smoking of e-cigarettes or shisha pipes indoors and in public.

President Rodrigo Duterte also released an executive order ordering local governments to implement the anti-smoking law.

Posted in Latest News