Makati enforces anti-dengue ordinance finesBy Niña Calleja
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—The city government of Makati has begun to strictly enforce an ordinance, which imposes fines on residents and business owners who fail to keep their places dengue-free.
In a statement, Makati Mayor Junjun Binay warned residents to clear their places of all potential breeding areas—particularly where water stagnates—for dengue-carrying mosquitoes or face stiff fines and imprisonment.
Binay’s warning came as a response to a report that the total number of dengue cases in the city from January to August has risen by 9 percent compared to the same period last year.
The city government recorded a total of 370 cases of dengue fever for the first eight months of the year, which is higher compared to the 339 cases last year.
Since January, three have died from dengue—a 3-year old girl from Barangay Guadalupe Nuevo and a 7-year-old boy from Barangay Rizal both in May; and a 21-year-old man from Barangay Tejeros in August.
In the City Ordinance 2012-007, called “Anti-Dengue Vector Ordinance, “all owners, managers, administrators, caretakers of households, schools, vacant lots, abandoned houses, and various types of business establishments to clean up and constantly monitor their premises to avoid the accumulation of stagnant water where dengue-carrying mosquitoes breed.”
According to the four-page measure passed by the city council on Feb 9 and signed into law by the mayor, first-time violators will be warned and required to render three hours of community service in an area designated by the Makati Health Department.
On the second offense, violators will be fined P1,000 and ordered to do three-hour community service. The violators may also be imprisoned for two days at the discretion of the court.
On the third offense, violators will be penalized with P3,000 fine and three-hour community service, or imprisonment for three days at the discretion of the court.
Binay stressed that the ordinance also covers buildings and structures under construction, and thus, accumulating stagnant water and solid waste in these sites is also prohibited.
Meanwhile, the ordinance also requires those who intend to use prevention and control interventions with chemicals, such as fumigation, to secure a clearance from the city health department.
The pest control operators in Makati must first register or be accredited by the city’s health department before they could render services within the city.
Binay said the health and the environmental services departments have been closely coordinating with barangay officials to ensure that dengue prevention and control measures, including the spraying of adulticide targeting adult dengue carriers, are properly and safely carried out.
He said on his orders, city officials have also intensified the cleanup operations in 10 barangays where there is a cluster of dengue cases, namely, Pembo, Magallanes, Pio del Pilar, East Rembo, West Rembo, Bangkal, San Antonio Village, Sta. Cruz, Cembo, and Guadalupe Viejo.
According to the city’s information and community relations department, since the ordinance’s passage in February, no violator has yet been penalized as the task force in each of the 33 barangays of the city has just been formed.