The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) assured the public on Saturday that the Olongapo City police officer who defied the government’s health protocol will be answerable to the law.

In a news briefing, DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said that Police Corporal Ronald Baldero needs to explain his defiance to quarantine protocols as the PNP will investigate him for his unlawful acts.

DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya, (PCOO / MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)

“Kailangan niyang magpaliwanag kung bakit hindi siya sumuod sa mga health protocols ng IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force) (He needs to explain why he defied the IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force) protocols,’’ Malaya said.

Malaya noted having received a photo of a social gathering on Labrador St., Olongapo City that was supposedly organized by Baldero.

Based on his assessment of the photo, Malaya noted that it was evident that face masks and face shields were not worn as there was also an obvious violation of the physical distancing rule.

Malaya stressed that uniformed men and public officials should serve as role models to enable them to gain the respect and easily make the people follow their orders with regards to the enforcement of the health protocols.

“Kailangan ang manguna sa pagsunod sa mga protocols natin ay awtoridad (Authorities should take the lead in adhering to the (health) protocols),” he added.

Malaya also advised the public to check the existing ordinances of their respective localities if the use of pyrotechnics to welcome the New Year is allowed or not.

Even if Executive Order No. 28 allows the use of pyrotechnics, Malaya explained that it still depends if the concerned local government units (LGUs) will permit them to welcome the New Year.

Malaya said that EO No. 28 “authorized local government units (LGUs) to promulgate the necessary rules and regulations on firecrackers and other pyrotechnic devices within their territorial jurisdiction in conformity with national standards, rules, and regulations.’’

“Therefore, as authorized by their respective ordinances and issuances, LGUs may or may not issue special permits for the sale of consumer pyrotechnics or ‘pailaw’ in their respective jurisdictions,’’ Malaya said.

But Malaya emphasized that the use and sale of oversized and dangerous firecrackers are still banned in the country.

He noted some of these include “overweight with more than 1/3 teaspoon or more than 0.2 gram of net explosive ingredients; oversized- like atomic ‘big triangulo,’ ‘super lolo,’ ‘giant whistle bomb,’ etc; those with short fuse that should not burn less than three seconds but not more than six seconds; imported finished products; mixture of sulphur and or phosphorous fused with chlorates and unlabelled locally made products.’’

Although some firecrackers may be small in size, Malaya stressed they remained dangerous and hazardous to the public’s health.

Malaya said some of these are “watusi,” “piccolo,” “poppop,” “five star,” “pla-pla,” “lolo thunder,” “giant bawang,” “giant whistle bomb,” “atomic bomb,” “atomic triangle,” large-size “Judas Belt,” “Goodbye Delima,” “Hello Columbia,” “Goodbye Napoles,” “Super Yolanda,” and mother rocket.

Others are “kwiton,” “Super Lolo,” “Goodbye Bading,” “Goodbye Philippines,” “Bin Laden,” “Coke in can,” “pillbox,” “boga” (improvised cannon),” and “kabasi.”

“The department reiterates that Executive Order No. 28, Series of 2017, issued by President Duterte which strictly regulates the use of firecrackers and pyrotechnics still stands,’’ Malaya said.

He added that the DILG has issued Memorandum Circular No. 2017-105 supplemented by MC 2017-168 to provide the implementing guidelines for EO No. 28.

The PNP “has likewise issued an advisory to remind the public of the implementation of the said order.’’

Source: Manila Bulletin (