Shape up or ship out: DILG exec urges barangay officials to take COVID-19 duties seriously

Published May 30, 2021, 11:33 AM

by Chito Chavez

Barangay officials should be capable of enforcing health safety protocols to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) as they are given a sufficient budget to perform their duties, an official of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) said Sunday, May 30.

DILG Undersecretary for Barangay Affairs Martin Diño brushed off concerns among groups of local leaders that the apparent lack of manpower may affect the implementation of safety protocols in the community.

Diño, in an interview over ABS-CBN’s TeleRadyo, said the funding for each village depends on its size, noting that “barangay funds are increased when the area of the barangay becomes larger.”

President Duterte previously ordered law enforcers to arrest negligent barangay officials who will fail to monitor COVID-19 protocol violations including the ban on mass gathering.

This, after Duterte learned of recent violations on mass gathering including a viral boxing match during a fiesta in Manila and the gathering at a resort in Caloocan City.

​​​Eden Chua Pineda, national president of Liga ng mga Barangay (LnB), had expressed support to Duterte’s order but he appealed to authorities to give due process to village chiefs when making the arrests.

Pineda stressed that barangay chairpersons “can only do so much” in monitoring the activities in their areas of jurisdiction, especially if these were done without the knowledge of local officials or the organizers failing to get a permit.