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Lost draft delays EO on smoke-free PH

The Department of Health (DoH) yesterday said the delay in the signing of the Executive Order (EO) which aims to make Philippines a smoke-free country is due to the “lost” copy of the EO’s draft.

According to DoH Secretary Paulyn Ubial, a draft of the EO was submitted to the legal staff of the Executive Secretary last September 16.

“It has been reviewed by the legal staff of the Executive Secretary. But when we followed it up with the office, it seems they lost a copy,” said Ubial.

Ubila however said they will immediately submit another copy of the draft EO for President Duterte to sign.

Ubial remains confident the President has not changed his mind in prohibiting cigarette smoking in all public places in the country.

The Health Secretary added that Duterte, being a non-smoker, is passionate and committed to the advocacy of tobacco control in the country.

“With his full support, we hope that this will really be the administration that will really bring down the tobacco epidemic in the country,” Ubial said.

Under the proposed EO, cigarette smoking is set to be prohibited in all public places in the country much like what is being implemented in Davao City. (Argyll Cyrus B. Geducos)