An adviser of President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday said the next administration should be given the power to implement their own policies regarding the wearing of face masks.

In a “Laging Handa” briefing, Duterte’s adviser for entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion said he had discussed the proposal with president-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.

“Noong nag-meeting kami ni president-elect BBM (Marcos Jr.), he is open to the idea naman. Ang tingin ko naman dito, on outdoor settings, palagay ko let’s allow the LGUs (local government units) to decide whether face mask is required,” Concepcion said.

For now, Concepcion said LGUs and the public should respect Duterte’s mandatory mask-wearing policy.

“Since the Duterte administration has mandated the wearing of face masks in outdoor, dapat sundin natin. At bigyan natin ng respeto na itong panukala nila na until this administration ends – and it’s going to end at the end of this month – let’s respect the rules,” he said.

Duterte earlier said he was retaining the country’s mask mandate until the end of his presidency.

“There is no way that masks will not be required,” the president said in an April “Talk to the People” address. “It will be a part of the protocol for a long time until the last day of my office. Iyan ang order ko at ‘yan ang sundin ninyo.”

Duterte’s term will end on June 30, 2022. Marcos Jr. will assume office on the same date. John Ezekiel J. Hirro