No rally permits to be issued on SONA, says DILG

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MANILA – The Department of the Interior and Local Government has issued an advisory urging local governments not to issue rally permits during the President Duterte’s fifth State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday.

The advisory issued by DILG was in accordance with health protocols issued by the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases. IATF prohibits mass gatherings on areas under the General Community Quarantine (GCQ).

Local governments were advised to comply with IATF’s Resolution No. 57 where all forms of mass gatherings are prohibited under community quarantine and that includes rallies and demonstrations.

Interior Undersecretary and spokesperson Jonathan Malaya confirmed the advisory that mayors should not issue rally permit since we’re in pandemic and mass gathering would further risk spreading the virus’ transmission. The recommendation of DILG is to ensure and promote health and safety of the public.

Quezon City local government has announced that it will no longer issue permit to groups that intends of doing a protest during President’s SONA on Monday.

NCRPO chief Maj. Gen. Debold Sinas urged the rallyist to do the protest online instead. The uniformed services of government will deploy 5,600 personnel during the SONA. The President will deliver his fifth Sona on a limited number of guests who will have to be tested for Covid-19 prior to attending the event.

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