MMDA wants extended liquor ban
Cut back on the liquor and there will be fewer crimes and accidents.
This was the rationale cited by Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Chairman Francis Tolentino who said he would ask the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to extend by another 45 days the two-day liquor ban in connection with the May 13 elections.
According to Tolentino, this would help reduce crime and accidents caused by drunk driving.
The MMDA chairman said the ban on alcoholic drinks, which would take effect in the 45 days before the senatorial and local polls, said the move would complement the ongoing nationwide gun ban, which began on Jan. 13 and would last until June 12.
At present, the ban on liquor is enforced only on the day before the election and on Election Day itself, Tolentino said in a statement.
“Road accidents brought about by drunk driving continued to increase from 2011 to 2012,” he added.
“We cannot say our roads are safe because despite our programs designed to reduce road accidents, there are still many drivers [behind the wheel] even when they’re drunk, or worse, when they are high on drugs,” Tolentino said.
According to the agency chairman, he was supportive of Senate Bill No. 3365, which increases the penalty for driving under the influence (DUI) of liquor and illegal drugs.
Tolentino also appealed to netizens to support the MMDA’s call for an extended liquor ban by starting an online campaign or by filing a separate petition in the Comelec.
Under SB 3365, a driver cited for DUI faces three months’ imprisonment and a fine ranging from P20,000 to P80,000 if the violation did not result in physical injuries or the death of another person.
If the violation led to physical injuries, the driver would face imprisonment of a month to eight years and a fine of P100,000 to P200,000.
On the other hand, drivers with a DUI violation that result in the death of a person face 12 years’ imprisonment and a fine of P300,000 to P500,000.
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