Longer curfew in Metro Manila beginning Sunday amid Delta variant threat

Longer curfew in Metro Manila beginning Sunday amid Delta variant threat
Commuters walk along the sidewalk on EDSA, a major thoroughfare in Metro Manila, on Sunday, March 14, 2021.
The STAR / Michael Varcas, file

MANILA, Philippines — Metro Manila will be under longer curfew hours beginning Sunday amid the threat posed by the more contagious Delta coronavirus variant.

Metro Manila Development Authority chairman Benhur Abalos announced that curfew hours will be from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. in the capital region, longer by two hours compared to the current curfew which lasts from 12 a.m. to 4 a.m.

In June, as coronavirus cases decreased in Metro Manila, mayors in the region decided to shorten curfew hours to give people more time to eat in restaurants, visit malls and do other activities which can help spur the pandemic-battered economy.

Metro Manila reverted to a stricter general community quarantine, with President Rodrigo Duterte hoisting “heightened restrictions” over the region after the Department of Health confirmed that there is local transmission of the Delta variant.

According to the World Health Organization, “local transmission indicates locations where the source of infection is within the reporting location.” 

Health authorities have so far detected 64 cases of the Delta variant in the country, with 35 of them classified as local cases. 

The Delta variant was first detected in India and is seen to be driving a significant increase in COVID-19 cases even in countries with high vaccination rates. — Xave Gregorio

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