Repeal of 2 a.m. liquor ban to push through

ILOILO City Mayor Jerry Treñas has yet to repeal the executive order banning the sale of liquor in nightspots after 2 a.m. but drunks and hooligans already went gaga early morning of July 3, 2019. (DG file)

By: Jennifer P. Rendon 

FROM the looks of it, there’s no stopping the repeal of an ordinance directing bars and night spots to close shop by 2 a.m.

Colonel Martin Defensor, Jr., Iloilo City police chief, said Mayor Jerry Treñas already talked to him about repealing Executive Order No. 146, Series of 2017.

E.O. 146 is “An Executive Order Directing the Mandatory Closure at 2:00 O’clock in the Morning of All Bars, Night Clubs, Disco Bars, Resto Bars and Other Similar Establishments Providing for Exemptions and Sanctions Thereof, and for other purposes.”

Treñas will repeal E.O. 146 provided that the Iloilo City Police Office (ICPO) can deploy enough police officers who will secure clients of leisure destinations in the city.

The mayor said that since Iloilo City is a Meetings, Incentives, Conventions and Exhibitions (MICE) area, there must be a venue for tourists to unwind.

“Mayor Treñas asked us kung kaya ba namin na mag-guard once na ma-lift ang ordinance. We are bound to follow lawful orders,” he said.

Defensor said they would make necessary adjustments but he finds no need to augment the Mandurriao Police Station, the unit which covers several posh night spots in the metropolis.

But in carrying out the new scheme, Defensor said they also want to bargain with establishment owners.

“They must provide their own security personnel and bouncers and must ensure us that when their customers get rowdy, they need to inform us immediately,” he said.

But several observers voiced that the repeal of the liquor ban would only pave the way for incidents like the one that happened 12:45 a.m. of July 3, 2019 at QuixMart, a convenience store at Barangay Q. Abeto, Mandurriao district.

Three persons suffered physical injuries after an altercation with another group.

The victims were identified as Eduard Ryan Villanueva, 36, Frederick Azarcon, 24, and and Joebert Dicreto, 23.

Villanueva and Azarcon were about to leave the store when they had a misunderstanding with another group of men who were binge drinking.

The group allegedly mauled Villanueva and Azarcon.

Dicreto allegedly tried to pacify but he was also hit by a hard object. The suspects immediately fled.

The victims suffered bruises and wounds on the arms and face.

At 3 a.m. of the same day, three persons were arrested after they traded jabs in front of a hotel at Barangay San Rafael, Mandurriao.

The three were identified as Cris John, 20; Wilfred, 26, of Barangay San Juan, Molo; Andre Jed, 21, of Barangay Bolilao, Mandurriao.

The group of Chris John and Wilfred had an altercation with the group of Andre Jed while at MO2 Ice Disco Bar.

After they came out of the discotheque, Andre Jed’s group attacked Chris John and Wilfred.

Both groups were allegedly drunk which may have triggered the incident.

Meanwhile, 21-year-old Van, Andre Jed’s friend, was also arrested after he acted unruly and hurled invectives at Police Senior Master Sergeant Leo Jalandoni in the Mandurriao Police Station.

Earlier, Defensor said the 2:00 a.m. liquor ban worked in their favor but they also understand the predicament of the business sector.

Then Mayor Jose Espinosa III issued the executive order citing “numerous reports of the proliferation of incidents due to intoxication or under the influence of liquor.”

Further, the order also cited the “rising number of bars, night clubs, disco bars, restaurants, resto bars and other similar establishments which are engaged in unregulated dispensation if liquor and other intoxicating drinks even during wee hours of the morning and even at daytime result in the improper and harmful conduct and behavior of the consumers.”