Mayor Estrada: DILG ignoring Robredo memo | Inquirer News
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Mayor Estrada: DILG ignoring Robredo memo

Says LGUs can issue provisional business permits
By: - Reporter / @jovicyeeINQ
/ 12:33 AM June 08, 2015

MANILA Mayor Joseph Estrada is asking why the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) seemed to be ignoring its own memorandum allowing local government units (LGUs) to issue provisional business permits pending an inspection of the establishments concerned by the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP).

This comes a week after President Aquino warned Valenzuela government officials that they could be held liable for giving a business permit to Kentex Manufacturing Inc. despite its noncompliance with fire safety standards, a violation of the Revised Fire Code of the Philippines. This prompted Interior Secretary Mar Roxas to reiterate the “no fire safety inspection certificate (FSIC), no business permit” directive.

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“It has been the practice of LGUs all over the country to issue provisional permits to ensure that the operation of business establishments will not be hampered,” Estrada said in a statement on Saturday.

He added that it was a legal practice based on the memorandum circulars issued by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), DILG and BFP.

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Estrada was referring to joint DILG-DTI Memorandum Circular No. 1, series of 2010, dated Aug. 26, 2010; the late Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo’s DILG Memorandum Circular No. 2011-05 dated Jan. 4, 2011; and a Sept. 24, 2012 BFP memorandum.

Under the memorandum circulars, mayors can issue provisional business permits while the BFP conducts an inspection of the business establishments concerned. The BFP would then report violators to the local governments which could then revoke the issued permits.

Valenzuela Mayor Rex Gatchalian said last week that Kentex’s business permit was not revoked because the BFP never submitted a follow-up report. On May 13, blaze broke out at the slipper factory in Valenzuela City, killing 72 workers. It was later found out that the factory didn’t have automatic fire sprinklers and fire detection alarm systems.

Estrada said the memorandum circulars were issued then because the business sector complained of the BFP’s slowness in conducting inspections. He added that it would be ironic if LGUs would be penalized for following the memorandum circulars authorizing them to issue provisional business permits pending the release of the FSIC.

“What will we do? Will we just wait for this FSIC to be released? What will happen to our economy? What will happen to the businesses? What will happen to the local economy and local employees?” Estrada asked.

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TAGS: business permits, DILG, Joseph Estrade, LGUs
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