The City government of Davao, through the Vices Regulation Unit (VRU), celebrated the 22nd anniversary of the Anti-Smoking Campaign in Davao City, and World Tobacco Day.

A motorcade was held on May 31, followed by a program wherein several law enforcement offices were given recognition for their efforts in implementing the Anti-Smoking Campaign in the city.

VRU Officer-in-Charge, Hernando Q. Las, said in an interview with the City Information Office that during the first quarter of 2024, the number of apprehensions went up compared to the same period in 2023.

From January to March 2024, the VRU apprehended a total of 1, 722 violators compared to the 1,630 apprehensions in January to March 2023.

Meanwhile, during the program, City Councilor Luna Acosta, the principal author of the amended Comprehensive Anti-Smoking Ordinance in the city, said during her speech that the city government saw the need to revise and strengthen the anti-smoking ordinance in the city. This, after the results of a study conducted by the City Anti-Drug Abuse Council (CADAC), which showed that a lot of minors frequent bars and clubs where they are indiscriminately served liquor and cigarettes.

Acosta also said that the study conducted by CADAC showed that there are children exposed to the use of tobacco as early as 6 years old.

City Mayor Sebastian “Baste” Duterte said in his message delivered by Las that the City Government of Davao will continue to back efforts in strengthening policies related to tobacco control and prevention, as well as in raising awareness through campaigns and programs on the prevention of tobacco-related diseases.

Duterte also reaffirmed the city’s commitment to promoting public health and fostering a culture of a healthier community—a Davao City that is smoke-free.

The VRU also urged Dabawenyos anew to stop smoking cigarettes and vapes as they are not only outlawed in the city but are also detrimental to the health, not only of the user but also the public. CIO