Philippine police have announced a 48-hour alcohol ban to run from May 12-13 to help ensure peaceful and orderly midterm elections.
Speaking today (Thursday, May 9), police Colonel Bernard Banac said the alcohol ban will cover drinking, selling and serving intoxicating drinks from 12.01am on Sunday, May 12, until midnight on Monday, May 13, which is the day of the midterm elections.
“This is part of our security preparation for peaceful and orderly elections on Monday,” he told reporters at a press conference. “In this period the selling of alcoholic drinks and drinking is strictly prohibited”.
The police have also been enforcing a nationwide gun ban, prohibiting the bearing or transportation of firearms or other deadly weapons. This was imposed on January 13 and will run until June 12.
Col. Banac said police had mounted more than 60,000 checkpoints and conducted about 5,000 enforcement operations. As a result 4,459 firearms and 42,430 other deadly weapons have been seized. A total of 5,316 violators have been arrested.
Since January 13, the police have recorded 33 “election-related incidents” in which 14 people have been killed and 22 others injured.
Alcohol ban, but day off work
On a happier note, President Duterte has declared May 13 a special non-working holiday. Proclamation 719 was signed at the Malacañang today.
About 61 million Filipinos are expected to vote for political figures ranging from local councillors to members of the national senate.
The voting will be take place at thousands of polling stations across the country.
Although the president’s name is not on any ballot paper, the midterm elections are widely seen as a referendum on the administration and a test of the chief executive’s popularity.
As we reported in April, the president’s satisfaction rating has bounced back to a record high.
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