DOT-accredited establishments can seek exemption from election liquor ban

Establishments accredited by the Department of Tourism (DOT) are entitled to seek exemption from the election liquor ban.

“Exemption from the liquor ban only shows that it is to its advantage if an establishment is DOT-accredited,” said lawyer Helen J. Catalbas, DOT-6 director.

“That is also the reason why we conduct accreditation campaign to encourage all tourism-oriented establishments in Western Visayas to be DOT-accredited,” she added.

Under Resolution No. 10461 promulgated by the Commission on Elections (Comelec), the liquor ban will implemented on May 12 until  election day on May 13.

The ban is in accordance with Section 261 of the Omnibus Election Code.

Those found selling, furnishing, offering, buying, serving or taking intoxicating drinks on the days will be punished by imprisonment for up to six years.

Section 3 of the resolution provides that hotels, resorts, restaurants, and other establishments of the same nature duly certified by the DOT as tourist-oriented and habitually in the business of catering to foreign tourists may be exempted from the ban

But Catalbas stressed that only foreign tourists taking intoxicating liquor in authorized hotels and establishments are exempted. Any other persons including owners and managers of accredited establishments are prohibited to buy or take intoxicating liquor anywhere in the Philippines.

To avail of the exemption, authorized establishments should secure prior written authority from Provincial Election Supervisors or City Election Officers upon showing that there are justifiable reasons.

Other benefits of DOT-accredited establishments include technical/security/facilitation assistance, being   prioritized   in   DOT   training programs and inclusion in the promotional and marketing programs of DOT in the Philippines and abroad.IMT