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Kakabalik lang, may excuse agad? Duque says implementing Duterte’s smoking ban a challenge

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The Department of Health (DOH) admitted that implementation of a country-wide smoking ban ordered by President Rodrigo Duterte three months ago would be a big a challenge.

DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III said the full and effective implementation of Executive Order (EO) No. 26 especially at the hands of local government units (LGUs).

“It is easy to have an EO but the success of its implementation is another story,” said Duque who returned to his old post a week ago following the failure of his predecessor, Paulyn Ubial, to get the nod of the Commission on Appointments.

Duque said he would hold dialogues with LGUs that were successful implementing tobacco control policies, such as Davao and Makati that were among the recipients of Red Orchid Awards, a recognition given to LGUs with successful initiatives inn creating a smoke-free environment.

Executive Order No. 26 took effect last July. It prohibited smoking in all enclosed public places and public conveyances, except in designated smoking areas on a nationwide basis.

Under the said EO, the LGUs were directed to create a task force that will implement what the law provides for those who commit violations which include penalties. (PNA)