Today, the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has called on Pasig City Mayor Vito Sotto, because of an alleged violation of quarantine protocols.
If you need a refresher, the Bayanihan Act—made law on Mar. 24—granted President Duterte sweeping powers to implement measures in curbing the current pandemic. This also means that local government units must follow national guidelines.
NBI Deputy Director Ferdinand Lavin mentions that this is because of a “violation of the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act.”
The violation in question was Mayor Sotto allowing tricycle drivers to continue working, despite the mass transportation ban. Back in the first week of the Luzon-wide quarantine, it can be recalled that the Pasig mayor allowed tricycle workers to transport healthcare workers. For the LGU, this was one alternative to their shortage of government vehicles. On Mar. 17, Sotto appealed for an exception to the tricycle option—which was denied. Later on, Sotto said that his city will comply with the public transport ban.
According to Inquirer, Mayor Sotto is being asked to submit an explanation on the alleged RA 11469 violation on Apr. 7, 10 a.m. The mayor has also voiced out his thoughts on Twitter, saying that his unit “complied with all directives” while mentioning one key tidbit: The Bayanihan Act was only made law after the incident happened.
Pasig Mayor Vico Sotto responded through a twitter post after the NBI summoned him over a possible violation of Republic Act 11469 or the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act. pic.twitter.com/MQaTinm2ZZ
— Inquirer (@inquirerdotnet) April 1, 2020
President Duterte signed the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act into law on Mar. 24. There are no provisions on it that work for retroactive applications. Previously, Sotto has been the subject of praise from citizens. Several people have come to show their support again, as shown with Twitter’s top trending tag, #ProtectVico. As for where this goes, we’ll only have to wait and see what happens come Apr. 7.
Photo from Inquirer.net