The Quezon City government has reimposed a liquor ban during the duration of the modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) from Aug. 4 to 18 as part of efforts to prevent the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Mayor Joy Belmonte issued the memorandum upon the recommendation of the City Epidemiological Surveillance Unit (CESU) to stop the selling of liquor to arrest the rise of virus cases in the communities.

“Ito’y makatutulong para mapigil ang paglaganap ng virus sa ating mga komunidad na karaniwang nangyayari dahil sa pagtitipun-tipon ng mga tao,” said Belmonte.

According to CESU head Dr. Rolly Cruz, there were cases that drinking sessions in public places caused the spread of the virus in some communities including those placed under Special Concern Lockdown.

“There were various instances where those who contracted the virus claimed they simply went out for a drink with neighbors,” said Cruz.

In Belmonte’s order, any person, establishment or entity is barred from selling alcoholic beverages during the MECQ period, even if they have a valid license to sell.

The Mayor however clarified that alcohol consumption is allowed inside private residences.

Belmonte said those found to be in violation of the order will be meted closure, suspension, or revocation of permit or license.

“In the case of unlawful consumption, they will face possible arrest and criminal charges under applicable laws or ordinances,” she said.

The City’s Department of Public Order and Safety, Business Permits and Licensing Department (BPLD), Liquor License and Regulatory Board (LLRB), Quezon City Police District and the barangays are tasked to implement the order.

The city imposed a liquor ban during the ECQ, but partially lifted it when Metro Manila was placed under MECQ last May 16, allowing the sale of alcoholic beverages from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. daily.