BY CHRYSEE G. SAMILLANO
Bacolod Mayor Alfredo Abelardo Benitez issued Executive Order No. 34 reconvening the Bacolod Anti-Smoking Task Force (BASTF).
The order said City Ordinance No. 641, series of 2013 aims to regulate smoking in all public places and conveyances and to ensure the strict enforcement of R.A. 9211 or The Tobacco Regulation Act 2003.
C.O. 09-16-784 series of 2016 amended certain provisions of C.O. No. 641 and also enhanced the composition of the BASTF and its functions, it said.
The task force will aid in the implementation, enforcement, and monitoring of this order and protect the same from tobacco industry interference at all times, as well as conduct educational awareness campaigns, information dissemination programs, and capacity building programs that will inform the constituents and train enforcement officers, the order said.
The BASTF was convened previously and its action team was organized to enforce the ordinance but eventually halted operation due to the emergence of the pandemic, it said.
The order said the BASTF will be composed of Benitez as chairperson and Councilor Simplicia Distrito as vice chairperson with members composed of Councilor Claudio Puentevella, SP Committee on Health and Sanitation, chairperson; City Administrator Pacifico Maghari lll; City Health Officer Dr. Carmela Gensoli;
City Legal Officer Romeo Carlos Ting, Jr.; PIO Carmela Gamboa; Office of the Building Official head Isidro Sun Jr.; Permits and Licensing Division head Stella Rose Rayos; City Treasurer Arlene Memoria; City Engineer Loben Rafael Ceballos and representatives of civil society organizations, Bacolod City Police Office, Environment and Natural Resources Office, Liga ng mga Barangay president Lady Gles Pallen, and Sangguniang Kabataan Federation president Ayesha Villaflor.*