PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte is pushing a measure to ban all firecrackers and pyrotechnic devices nationwide, Malacañang said Tuesday.
“He wants Congress to enact this law at the soonest time possible so that the public debate on the banning of fireworks and pyrotechnics could begin as early as possible,” Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque said.
He said Duterte discussed the idea during a Cabinet meeting and reiterated his view that firecrackers and pyrotechnics were inimical to human health and safety.
“The President has always banned firecrackers in Davao City as a mayor,” Roque said.
“So I don’t think it’s a result of a recommendation of any other than it’s a result of his own prognosis that firecrackers and pyrotechnics are inimical to human health and safety.”
To prevent job loss to the thousands of firecracker and pyrotechnic workers who would be affected by the ban, the President has instructed the Trade department to look for alternative livelihoods for around 75,000 Filipinos working in the industry.
Earlier, the Department of Health recorded zero deaths and fewer firecracker injuries in the celebrations to welcome 2018.
The department reported a 68-percent decline in firecracker injuries from Dec. 21, 2017 to Jan. 1, 2018, as compared to the same period in 2016.
It recorded 191 cases of which the majority was from Metro Manila with 115 cases.
The figure is 77 percent lower than the five-year average from 2012 to 2016.