Liquor ban lifted in Cebu City
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Here’s a piece of good news for patrons of alcoholic beverages in Cebu City. The liquor ban in the city has been officially lifted by Mayor Edgardo Labella today, May 6, 2021.
The lifting of the ban on alcohol consumption in the city was contained in Executive Order (EO) No. 130.
In EO 130, establishments with special permits may serve liquor to customers with no limit to the number of orders that an establishment can serve.
However, establishments can only serve up to 50 percent capacity of the space at any given time and no live entertainment will be allowed to perform inside the premises.
Furthermore, each establishment must establish a Health and Infection Prevention and Control Officer (HIPCO) who will be trained by the Business Permit and Licensing Office (BPLO) prior to the issuance of a special permit.
Establishments can only serve liquor outside curfew hours or from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily and they must be close at least 30 minutes prior to the curfew.
Lawyer Jared Limquiaco, the head of the BPLO, said there are 39 establishments already issued with the special liquor permit.
“Gitrain na nato ang mga HIPCOs ani nila. Padayon pa sad ta sa pagtrain hangtud karon. Only ang mga establishments nga naay special permit ang pwede makaserve og liquor,” he said.
Outside these establishments, a certificate will be posted to signify that they are allowed to serve liquor and the allowable number of individuals that can be served there.
The establishments are also expected to maintain the minimum health protocols such as maintaining social distancing.
Failure to follow the guidelines, the establishments will be warned upon first offense, will lose their special permits on the second offense, and will lose their business permits on the third offense.
Limquiaco hopes the establishments will be compliant with the guidelines and avoid the risk of getting closed down again.
Councilor Joel Garganera, the deputy chief implementor of the Emergency Operations Center (EOC), issued an appeal to establishments serving liquor, may they be restaurants or bars, to be vigilant.
He said that liquor should be served only if the customers are compliant and if they see that customers are getting drunk and unruly, they must no longer serve liquor to the table.
“Kalisod man gud kung hubog na, magshagit na, magkiat na. Dali na lang kaayo itakod sa COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019),” said the councilor.
The EOC and BPLO will be randomly checking all establishments for their compliance with the guidelines.
As for sari-sari stores and convenience stores, they may be able to sell liquor as before, but they cannot allow consumers to drink liquor within the premises, or they will risk losing their business permits. /rcg
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