The Department of the Interior and Local Government is studying proposals on the country’s mask mandate, its secretary said on Tuesday.

Interior Secretary Benhur Abalos said the proposals were already being discussed with the country’s inter-agency Covid-19 task force.

“There are points of view saying we and Myanmar are the only countries in Asean (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) that have a mask mandate and that the others have already lifted theirs,” Abalos said in a CNN Philippines interview.

“Of course, there are those mentioning things like vaccination, booster shots and other factors. So we have to weigh everything as that is what we are discussing,’’ he added.

Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama earlier issued an executive order allowing the optional wearing of face masks in several settings, including outdoors.

Rama’s order stated that masks were only required in hospitals, clinics and other medical and diagnostic facilities, and that only individuals who are sick, immunocompromised or have flu-like symptoms were required to wear masks.

Abalos said he had talked to the Cebu City mayor regarding the order and told him to await the task force’s decision on the matter.

Rama’s order took effect on Sept. 1 and will be on trial until Dec. 31. John Ezekiel J. Hirro