A surprise joint “one-time big-time” operation was launched by the Quezon City government and the Quezon City Police District (QCPD) against violators of face mask ordinance on Wednesday netted 1,029 offenders.
The operation was conducted by the QCPD and various local government offices, such as the Department of Public Order and Safety (DPOS), QC Task Force Disiplina, Task Force for Transportation Management and the QC Social Services Development Department.
According to DPOS head Gen. Elmo San Diego, the violators were apprehended in violation of Executive Order No. 25 and City Ordinance No. 2936 , which requires the wearing of face masks in public places amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
“We want the public to know that we are serious in implementing these policies for the safety of Quezon City residents,” said San Diego.
“Sayang lang ang mga kautusang ito ng ating lungsod kung hindi natin ipatutupad dahil ito’y para sa kapakanan at kaligtasan ng lahat,” he added.
San Diego said the violators were processed and documented by the QCPD at Amoranto Sports Complex, where they also underwent a seminar on how to properly wear masks.
The violators were released after the documentation, except for two who have standing warrant of arrest for attempted murder and robbery with force intimidation.
The local government and the QCPD will file appropriate charges against the violators before the QC Prosecutors Office.
Under City Ordinance No. 2936, violators will be fined P1,000, P2,000 and P3,000 for the first, second and third offense, respectively.
Mayor Joy Belmonte has repeatedly called on residents to wear a face mask to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
“Muli kong ipinapaalala na napakahalaga ng pagsusuot ng face mask dahil ito ang pangunahing depensa natin laban sa virus,” said Belmonte.
The strict enforcement of mask wearing was one of the law enforcers' response to the spike in community transmission.
It was discovered through contact tracing that prohibited activities like parties, drinking sessions, videoke, boodle fights, contact sports and loitering were among the causes in the increase of COVID-19 cases in some areas.