June 1, 2023

Malacañang believes one year is enough time for firecracker manufacturers to prepare for the ban on fireworks and look for new sources of livelihood.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque made this remark after President Rodrigo Duterte reiterated his desire to have firecrackers banned next year, noting that public health and safety must be prioritized.

In a Palace press briefing, Roque said the President understands the plight of manufacturers, which is why he is giving them a one year ultimatum to get ready by looking for new sources of income.

Pinagbigyan naman po nga nga itong manggagawang ito ng isa pang taon. Sa loob ng isang taon na ito, inaasahan natin na hahanap na po ang mga apektadong manggagawa ng alternatibong hanapbuhay,” Roque said.

Roque said Duterte was bent on the imposition of a total ban on firecrackers since his hometown, Davao City, has a standing ordinance on the total ban of firecrackers and other pyrotechnic devices.

Inihalintulad po ni Presidente ‘yung ginawa niya sa Davao na absolute ban talaga sa firecrackers. So ‘yan po ang nasa isip ng Presidente,” he said.

Roque said Metro Manila mayors as well as the Department of the Interior and Local Government have also agreed to Duterte’s plan to ban fireworks completely.

He said the DILG will instead promote centralized fireworks displays to cut down on death and injuries to people setting off firecrackers.

In a taped speech, Duterte said he sympathizes with firecracker manufacturers, but noted that it is the government’s duty to protect people’s health and safety.

“I really understand you. I might even sympathize with you. Loss of earnings and you are driven out of business. But the problem is the higher duty of government to protect public interest, public health,” he said.

“With every product that is sold to the public, the government must have an intervention or to interdict something which is really not good. Mahirap ‘yang mga maputol ‘yang paa,” he said. – PNA