(City of Pasay Logo)

(City of Pasay Logo)

MANILA, June 4 (Mabuhay) – Calls to ban the upcoming concert of popular band One Direction are still premature as far as the Pasay City government is concerned.

“At present, calls to ban One Direction from holding their concert in Pasay City are as yet premature since their concert promoter has not yet applied for a permit with the city government,” city government spokesman Jonathan Malaya said on the city government’s Facebook page.

But Malaya said that once the concert organizers apply for a permit for the concert, they have to comply with all city laws and regulations.

He added the city government will deploy an inspection team to “closely monitor” the artist’s compliance with the terms and conditions of the permit.

Malaya also said the promoters will have to consider the audience’s sensibilities, and that the show should not promote “bad practices.”

He added the city government has yet to receive a formal complaint from any person or group asking the city government to deny a permit for the concert slated for March 2015.

The band is scheduled to hold a two-day concert on March 21-22, 2015 at the SM Mall of Asia grounds. Fans endured long queues to buy tickets, the most expensive of which cost nearly P18,000.

Anti-drugs advocacy group Laban ng Pamilyang Pilipino (LPP) on Monday urged the members of One Direction to undergo drug tests before they perform in the country next year.

This call was made after a video of two members of the group (Zayn Malik and Louis Tomlinson) allegedly smoking marijuana went viral last week.

The said video, obtained by United Kingdom-based Daily Mail, was said to have been recorded while the band was in Peru for the South American leg of their 2014 world tour.

“If they want the concert to push through, the members should take a drug test as soon as they arrive at Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) before us and the media,” Jonathan Morales, the group’s founder said in a press conference.

Additionally, the group wants the singers to be monitored by Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) officers before and during the concert to assure that they are not under the influence of drugs.

LPP strongly pressed for these conditions to be implemented noting that the country has the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, a law declaring marijuana as illegal in the Philippines.

“We will request that all baggage of the group to be thoroughly inspected and that they undergo the normal process of inspection,” LPP posted in their Facebook group.

Furthermore, Morales insisted that the group is not setting a good example to their millions of fans who are mostly young teenagers.

“Handa ang aming grupo na pangunahan ang Sambayanang Pilipino na tiyakin ang kaligtasan ng milyon-milyong mga Pilipino na umiidolo sa grupo ng One Direction sa pamamagitan ng pagsusulong ng no drug test, no entry sa Pilipinas,” Morales emphasized.

Meanwhile, an official of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) pressed the government to ban the English-Irish band from performing in the country next year.

“If you are for your people will you allow your people to be poisoned?…As a government that vowed to protect its people it should have the power to use that force,” said Fr. Kunegundo Garganta, executive secretary of the CBCP-Episcopal Commission on Youth (ECY), in an interview.

The CBCP official encouraged the youth to support other groups who are more “positive” instead.

“There are a number of positive group or bands who are also popular and being idolized not because they are flip or stoned,” Garganta added. (MNS)