Monday, June 27, 2011

MMDA should not implement so-called Smoking ban in Metro

MMDA should stick with its mandate----solve the humongous traffic and flood problem in Metro Manila instead of implementing what it claims is its mandate of arresting smokers in the metropolis. Instead of chasing smokers, chase smoke belchers, colorum buses and erring killer drivers. This policy of arresting smokers will defocus the attention of MMDA TRAFFIC enforcers. Worse, this will be another means of corruption. MMDA chairman Tolentino has not entirely cleansed the agency of corrupt personnel. It is not yet ready to implement what it claims is part of its mandate.

Tolentino would be doing Noynoy a great disservice particularly now when public support is in the wane. Many people will surely get angry with the government with this so-called ban.

Besides, MMDA will surely violate the law because its claim of being the designated implementing agency of Republic Act 9211 is not legally supported. Section 29 of the same law specifically says which agencies are legally mandated to implement the law:

Section 29. Implementing Agency. - An Inter-Agency Committee- Tobacco (IAC-Tobacco), which shall have the exclusive power and function to administer and implement the provisions of this Act, is hereby created. The IAC-Tobacco shall be chaired by the Secretary of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) with the Secretary of the Department of Health (DOH) as Vice Chairperson. The IAC-Tobacco shall have the following members:
a. Secretary of the Department of Agriculture (DA);
b. Secretary of the Department of Justice (DOJ);
c. Secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR);
d. Secretary of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST);
e. Secretary of the Department of Education (DepEd);
f. Administrator of the National Tobacco Administration (NTA);
g. A representative from the Tobacco Industry to be nominated by the legitimate and recognized associations of the industry; and
h. A representative from a nongovernment organization (NGO) involved in public health promotion nominated by DOH in consultation with the concerned NGO's;
The Department Secretaries may designate their Undersecretaries as their authorized representatives to the IAC.

Did you see anything like "MMDA" there?

Again, MMDA should refrain from enforcing this. It will be total chaos in the streets. This will only be a source of graft and corruption.