COVID-19 task force to meet May 11 to decide fate of ECQ areas
In this July 25, 2019 photo, some Metro Manila mayors and officials of the Metro Manila Development Authority and Department of Interior and Local Government meet ahead of the Metro Manila Council meeting.
Manila PIO/Released

COVID-19 task force to meet May 11 to decide fate of ECQ areas

Ratziel San Juan (Philstar.com) - May 9, 2020 - 3:14pm

MANILA, Philippines — The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases is set to convene next Monday to discuss what will happen to areas currently under enhanced community quarantine after May 15, according to presidential spokesperson Harry Roque.

“Antayin lang po natin hanggang Lunes po 'yan dahil inaasahin natin na magkakaroon ng espesyal na meeting po ang IATF sa Lunes nang umaga dahil inaasahan natin na sa hapon, isusumite na nila kay presidente ang kanilang rekomendasyon kung anong dapat mangyari doon sa mga lugar na nananatili po sa ECQ hanggang ngayon,” Roque said during the Saturday morning Laging Handa virtual briefing.

(Let’s wait until Monday for the IATF’s recommendation since we expect the task force to hold a special meeting on Monday morning because we expect later in the day, they will submit to President Rodrigo Duterte their recommendation on what will happen to areas that remain under ECQ until now.)

The IATF spokesman also reiterated that the task force has not yet agreed on anything or made a final recommendation to the president.

However, he said that areas that continue to see a large number of COVID-19 cases will not be downgraded to a GCQ, citing Interior Secretary Eduardo Año.

“Bagamat maraming lugar po siguro sa Metro Manila ay magiging GCQ na, siyempre mga matataas na kaso po, hindi 'yan magiging GCQ,” Roque said.

(Although many parts in Metro Manila will shift to GCQ, those with a high figure of cases will not be downgraded.)

“Bagamat wala pang pinal na desisyon, sasabihin ko po na ang desisyon kung ano 'yung mga lugar na mananatili sa ECQ will be granular na tinatawag at it will also be surgical. So hindi po totoo na lahat ng lugar sa Metro Manila ay magji-GCQ na at hindi naman totoo na ang buong Metro Manila ay mananatili sa ECQ.”

(While a final decision has not been reached, I will tell you that the decision on which areas will remain under ECQ will be what we call granular and it will also be surgical. So it’s not true that all areas in Metro Manila will shift to GCQ and it’s also untrue that all of Metro Manila will remain under ECQ.)

Meanwhile, Interior Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said that the recommendation of Metro Manila mayors will be considered in the decision to extend the ECQ in their respective jurisdictions.

“Ginagalang natin ang rekomendasyon ng ating Metro Manila mayors kasi nga po katuwang natin sila sa pagpapatupad ng enhanced community quarantine,” Malaya told Dobol B sa News TV in a Saturday morning interview.

(We respect the recommendation of Metro Manila mayors since we are cooperating with them to enforce the enhanced community quarantine.)

The Metro Manila Council, composed of the capital region’s mayors, will meet Saturday to finalize their local quarantine recommendations for the IATF.

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