Rights Groups Reacts on Nationwide Smoking Ban

The plan of President Rodrigo Duterte to put the whole country under public smoking ban met with complaints from several rights groups saying there should be no law that will prohibit what people want to do.

In an interview with Radyo Veritas, KARAPATAN spokesman Edilberto Agcaoili on Monday said the move is the first step of Duterte to control the public.

“Sa tingin ko hindi maganda ito e. Sa dami ng taong naninigarilyo sa kung saan-saang kalye, mahihirapan tayong bantayan ito. Gagastos na naman ang gobyerno sa walang kwentang bagay”, Agcaoili said.

In the same program, Philippine Alliance of Human Rights Advocates (PAHRA) member said this Duterte’s plan will fail.

“E yong mga nagtatrabaho yosi at kape lang ang pahinga tapos ipagbabawal mo pa? masyado naman yatang malinaw na pang-aapi ito. Why don’t he ban the cigarette manufacturing na lang di ba?”, PAHRA said.

A nationwide smoking ban is set to be implemented across the Philippines, replicating rules currently observed in president Duterte’s former jurisdiction, Davao City, where he was mayor.

The new rules, which have been drawn up in an executive order and are awaiting the president’s approval, will see all public places across the country – indoor and outdoor – become smoke-free areas.

“What is being done in Davao is set to be done nationwide,” health secretary Pauline Ubial said, the Manila Bulletin reported. /Ted Calzada/


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