President Rodrigo R. Duterte asked Congress to pass a measure imposing a midnight liquor ban.
Duterte said that while he had already succeeded in implementing a nationwide smoking ban, similar to what he did in his hometown of Davao City, he also wanted establishments to close by midnight.
“A national law, para lahat na, that at 12 o’ clock, everything closes,” Duterte said in his fourth state of the nation address (SONA) on Monday (July 22).
In an interview with reporters after the SONA, Duterte clarified that he would not issue an executive order on a midnight liquor ban, similar to what he did with the nationwide smoking ban.
“I was just suggesting. I’d like to — Congress to ponder on it and maybe sleep on it and if they want. But it can improve tremendously the quality of life. Stop drinking at almost 11, then you go home,” Duterte said.
He admitted that he felt that it would not be a “popular move” in Congress because it would adversely affect businesses that operate during nighttime but noted that it would “do good” for people’s safety.
“Overall, by experience that it will do good. But I said, it would be at the expense of a reduced income for those who operate nightclubs, clubs, discos during nighttime,” Duterte said.
Duterte, however, acknowledged that the liquor ban in Davao City started at 2 a.m. and not midnight.
“We have ordered already, so you can close but we have to drink. Itong ngayon, at 12, everything closes down. Nobody works. So I… I think that we should adopt it. Most of the states, in many states, in many countries, ganun man. Alas dose, sarado na talaga (it’s like that. By 12 midnight, it’s already closed),” Duterte said.
He, meanwhile, floated the idea of banning karaoke and videoke by 8 or 9 p.m.
“We have to stop drinking. And jukebox, they’re only good up to eight, nine. Eight, maganda ‘yan (that’s good) It’s a… It’s there in every corner, store. Blares out noise and the children who will go to school and the working class, and you are there with your store,” Duterte said.
“I have prohibited it in Davao. And at 12, as you see, Davao is quiet because everybody is resting already. Be it in the memorial parks, cemetery, or in the comfort of their homes,” he added.
In May 2017, Duterte signed Executive Order No. 26 banning smoking in public areas.
Duterte also asked Congress to pass bills that would further raise excise taxes on tobacco and alcohol. (Azer Parrocha/PNA)