Malaya on ‘epal’ signages ban: Some community pantries being used to push political agenda | Inquirer News

Malaya on ‘epal’ signages ban: Some community pantries being used to push political agenda

/ 08:50 PM May 03, 2021

Malaya on ‘epal’ signages ban: Some community pantries being used to push political agenda

DILG Usec. Jonathan Malaya: We ant epal out of community pantry sites. File photo from DILG

MANILA, Philippines — Some community pantries are being used as propaganda to push for a certain political agenda, Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said Monday.

Malaya made the remark as the DILG banned putting up posters and names of “epal” individuals in the community pantries. The so-called “epal” individuals, usually politicians, are those who put signs showing their names and images on their projects.


“We have always been consistent in our call that community pantries must be independent of politics, whether it is right-wing politics, central politics, or left-wing politics because we have noticed that the community pantries were also used as propaganda by some people to push for a certain political agenda,” Malaya said in an interview with’s INQside Look.


Malaya called on political pantry organizers to avoid using the initiative for political reasons.

“Some people are taking advantage of it. They are politicians, they would go to the pantry, they will be interviewed in the guise of, ‘Oh, I went to this pantry because I explained to the organizer the rights and responsibilities if a police[officer] comes down and shuts them down,” Malaya said.

“Very subtle but clearly propaganda because that individual always runs for public office during elections, but in the guise of giving legal advice and to protect—allegedly protect—the human rights of community pantry organizers,” he added.

Should a community pantry be proven to be putting up posters or names of “epal” individuals, Malaya said the responsibility lies in the pantry’s organizer.

“If guidelines are not followed, if social distancing is not followed, if there is no proper coordination with the barangay, if it is used for politics, then it just stands to reason that the person responsible is also the organizer because he or she allowed his pantry to be used for political purposes,” Malaya said.

“Kami sa DILG, we would rather—whether it’s coming from the right, it’s coming from the left, it’s coming from the centrist, it’s coming from elected local officials—‘wag na po natin haluan ng politika ang pamimigay ng ayuda at ang mga community pantries kasi hindi naman ito panahon ng politika,” he added.


READ: DILG bans politicians’ billboards, posters at community pantries

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TAGS: community pantry

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