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IATF didn't approve measure making wearing masks mandatory

IATF didn't approve measure making wearing masks mandatory

MANILA, Philippines — An official of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Wednesday said the government’s task force did not approve any measure that mandates citizens to wear surgical masks or face masks when going out their homes during the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine.

DILG Spokesman and Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya in a text message said: “Requiring face masks is discriminatory. What if they can’t buy face masks because there’s none to buy anyway?”

Malaya said they are working with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to issue an advisory about wearing face masks in barangays.

In a separate text message, Philippine National Police (PNP) spokesman Brig. Gen. Bernard Banac said they will remind some barangays through the DILG to follow policies imposed under IATF guidelines for the duration of the quarantine period.

“We will inform DILG para ma remind ang mga barangays. Nag-impose kasi some barangays ng kani-kanyang additional policies na wala naman sa guidelines ng IATF,” Banac said.

(We will inform the DILG to remind our barangays. There are some barangays that imposed their additional policies that are not imposed by the IATF.)