The Muntinlupa City government and the president of barangay captains said no permit is needed to set up a community pantry in the city but organizers are advised to coordinate with their barangays for crowd control.
Muntinlupa Public Information Office chief Tez Navarro said the city government will abide by the statement of Interior Sec. Eduardo Año who said, “As to the issue of whether organizers are required to secure barangay permits, organizers should consult with the concerned barangays if such is required.”
Inspired by the Maginhawa Street, Quezon City food drive, several community pantries have sprouted in Muntinlupa.
The Muntinlupa City Fire Station headed by Fire Supt. Roberto Samillano set up a community pantry at the Muntinlupa City Central Fire Station in Alabang where people can get free items including eggs, canned goods, and noodles.
Others are the St. Peregrine Muntinlupa Community Pantry in front of St. Peregrine Laziosi Parish in Brgy. Tunasan, Muntinlupa Community Pantry along National Road, Brgy. Putatan, Sucat Community Pantry on Manuel L. Quezon Street in Brgy. Sucat, Tunasan Community Pantry, MUNTIng Tulong Para sa Mga Muntinlupeño: Putatan Community Pantry, Victoria Homes Community Pantry in Brgy. Tunasan, Katarungan Village Community Pantry, J&T Express Community Pantry in Brgy. Poblacion, Alabang Community Pantry in Brgy. Alabang and South Dream Garage Community Pantry in Brgy. Putatan.
Muntinlupa Association of Barangay Captains (ABC) president Walter Arcilla, who is the barangay chairman of Tunasan, told the Manila Bulletin that organizers are advised to get in touch with their respective barangays if the community pantry is located in a private subdivision.
They can also opt not to go to the barangay but they need to inform their homeowners’ association that a community pantry will be set up in the subdivision, he added.
The barangay, Arcilla said, will assist the organizer in crowd control only to ensure that health protocols are followed amid the ongoing coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.
“Ipaalam lang sa amin para makapagpadala kami ng tao, para ma-assist yung mga tao. Hindi natin pwedeng awatin yan at para sa tao yan. Kung kaya namin magdonate, magdo-donate din kami (They just need to inform us so we can send people to assist. We cannot stop it because it is for the people. If we can donate, we will also donate),” said Arcilla.
Organizers of community pantries located in public areas such as along public roads need not go to the barangays.
“Malalaman naman ng barangay yan (The barangay will know about it),” he said.
Muntinlupa Mayor Jaime Fresnedi has expressed his appreciation to the “bayanihan” spirit and volunteerism of community pantry organizers for helping people in need.