Cebu City gov't did not consult DOH on 'nonobligatory' face mask use – official | Inquirer News

Cebu City gov’t did not consult DOH on ‘nonobligatory’ face mask use – official

/ 04:40 PM August 31, 2022

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Health (DOH) was not consulted about the decision of Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama to make the wearing of face masks “nonobligatory.”

DOH officer-in-charge Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire revealed this in a press briefing Wednesday, even asserting that “a city within a country cannot act on its own.”


Also on Wednesday, Rama issued Executive Order No. 5, which states that the use of face masks within Cebu City “is non-obligatory but a measure of individual self-preservation and protection.”


“We were never consulted on this matter, regarding this removal of face masks outdoors and this executive order that they are going to issue,” Vergeire said, referring to Rama’s directive.

“As I say, a city within a country cannot act on its own. It cannot be an island across all islands.”

“We know that we have porous borders, that people over the country travel to and fro these different areas in the country, and that COVID-19 crosses borders.”

Vergeire continued: “So if we are preventing the infections in most of the areas in the country, and one area in the country will not have that kind of safeguard, and therefore the possibility or the risk of infections will be higher in this area because the safeguards are not there.”

“And therefore, people who are going there, or people from that place going out might have that higher risk of infecting other people also from the other area.”

Last June, Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia issued an executive order lifting the requirement of wearing face masks outdoors.


But this provincial directive was not recognized by the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG).

READ: DILG, Cebu local gov’t in face-off over mask rule

Eventually, however, then-Interior Secretary Eduardo Año said the DILG and the provincial government of Cebu have agreed to settle their differences concerning the optional wearing of face masks amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

READ: Año: DILG, Cebu province reach ‘compromise’ on masks

READ: Cebu guv agrees to wait for IRR before optional mask rule, says DILG


For more news about the novel coronavirus click here.
What you need to know about Coronavirus.
For more information on COVID-19, call the DOH Hotline: (02) 86517800 local 1149/1150.

The Inquirer Foundation supports our healthcare frontliners and is still accepting cash donations to be deposited at Banco de Oro (BDO) current account #007960018860 or donate through PayMaya using this link.

TAGS: Cebu City, COVID-19, DoH, face mask

© Copyright 1997-2024 | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.