Labella: Coordination, not permits, needed for community pantries

·2 min read

THE Cebu City government won’t ask for permits from individuals and groups who plan to organize community pantries around the city.

But Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella urged community pantry organizers to coordinate with their respective barangays first before holding their activities so that barangay officials can monitor them for health protocol compliance.

In an interview on Wednesday, April 21, 2021, Labella said there was no need for community pantry organizers to secure a permit since their initiative is not meant to earn money.

“They just have to get permission from the barangay. No need for a permit since they are not a business,” Labella added.

The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) initially announced that putting up community pantries needs a permit from the local government unit as they could pose a risk for transmission of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) due to possible crowding.

But the DILG then clarified that it would be up to the local government units if they would require organizers of community pantries to secure a permit.

Despite its growing popularity for those affected by recent lockdowns, Labella reminded the public not to abuse community pantries being organized in their areas.

As of April 21, there are three established community pantries in Cebu City, namely in Barangays Guadalupe, Tisa, and Sto. Niño.

Labella praised the initiatives conducted in the three barangays.

In the Facebook page of Tisa Daily Bulletin, the organizer of the community pantry advised recipients to get only what they need and give what they can.

The organizers of the community pantry in Barangay Guadalupe, meanwhile, are planning to install more community pantries in their barangay.

In their Facebook page, One Guadalupe - Cebu City encouraged those who plan to donate to give only food, and this should be packed already, while they discouraged clothes donation.

SunStar Cebu tried to reach the organizers of other community pantries in the city but got no response yet as of this writing. (JJL)