Earlier this week President Rodrigo Duterte made the announcement via a press conference that the use of e-cigarettes and vapes in public would now be banned. The importation of these products would also be prohibited. However, since the announcement was not accompanied by an executive order it was unclear whether these orders were actually enforceable.
At a press briefing in Camp Bagong Diwa, the Philippine National Police (PNP) officer-in-charge Lieutenant General Archie Gamboa addressed these concerns. According to Rappler, Gamboa – who is also a licensed lawyer – admitted that there will be no legal basis to file a case against anyone arrested for vaping in public.
However, the PNP will still be arresting individuals who vape in public in order “to implement the directive of the President.” Gamboa justifies that “under the police powers of the state you can do that.”
The delineation is that while those vaping or smoking e-cigarettes in public may be arrested, they will not be detained. These individuals will have their names listed on the blotter then will be released afterward.
While Gamboa explained that the blotter does not have probative value, cannot be used in court, and should not prejudice the person later on it remains a concern for many. This is because names cannot be removed from the blotter once placed there.
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