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Iwas panic! Valenzuela bans COVID-19 jokes

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The Valenzuela city council has passed an ordinance banning jokes and spreading false information about COVID-19.

The ordinance, passed on May 14, will penalize those who make false or malicious claims about COVID-19 with a P5,000 fine.

Violators may also be asked to render socio-cultural services in Valenzuela City like re-packing of relief goods in the City Alert Center, distribution of relief goods in various barangays, or other community services as may be authorized by the City Mayor or his authorized representative.

Minor offenders under 15 years of age who are taken into custody shall be released to his or her parent, guardian, or nearest relative. The City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) will also determine an appropriate Intervention Program in consultation with the child or to the person having custody of the child.

Those who are above fifteen (15) years but below eighteen (18) years of age shall be turned over to the CSWDO not later than eight (8) hours after the apprehension.

Parents/guardians and the minor offender shall both undergo an Intervention Program through counseling or community service. Failure to comply will be summoned before the Barangay Council for the Protection of Children (BCPC) or may be penalized in accordance with the Code of Parental Responsibility (Ord. 396 S. 2017).