DILG to enforce law on sale, use of firecrackers

Published December 9, 2020, 5:02 PM

by Chito Chavez

The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) assured Wednesday that the existing provision of Executive Order No. 28 will strictly be enforced with regards to the sale and use of fireworks display and firecrackers this Holiday Season.

Executive Order Series of 2017 provides for the regulation and control of the use of firecrackers and other pyrotechnic devices in the country.

In an interview, DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya clarified that at present “we don’t have a total ban (on fireworks display and firecrackers use)’’.

He stressed that the law enforcers will run after unlicensed fireworks dealers and sellers and those selling banned firecrackers.

Among the banned firecrackers identified as illegal by the Philippine National Police (PNP) are piccolo, watusi, giant whistle bomb, giant bawang, large judas’ belt, super lolo, lolo thunder, atomic bomb, atomic bomb triangulo, pillbox, boga, kwiton, goodbye earth, goodbye bading, hello Colombia and goodbye Philippines.

“Let’s wait for the President to make the decision. In the meantime, we don’t have a total ban. We will just implement the provisions of EO 28 which is the current policy,’’ Malaya said.

However, several firework store owners were not appeased with Malaya’s assurance stressing that the reprieve is only temporary with their livelihood next year still hanging in the balance.

On Tuesday, sellers of firecrackers in Bocaue, Bulacan asked President Duterte to reconsider his plan to totally ban fireworks in the country in 2021.

Several of the fireworks vendors feared the risk of losing their only source of income if the President’s plan to totally ban the use of fireworks display pushes through next year.

Other vendors asked the government to provide them with financial assistance if their sole livelihood is taken away.

Reacting to the strong opposition of the concerned parties in the total ban of firecrackers, DILG Undersecretary Epimaco Densing III said that the issue is now being assessed by the government. 

“I suggest they (firecrackers industry workers and dealers) write the IATF-MEID (Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases) to convey their position on this before a decision is made,’’ Densing said.

In the midst of the pandemic and in preparation for the new normal, authorities asked the firecracker industry workers to find other alternative livelihood opportunities after the President announced his plan to impose a total ban on firecrackers next year.