14-day quarantine for Metro residents in Negros, Marinduque
Health officials said there are 17 PUMs and 107 others under investigation on Negros island.
Michael Varcas
14-day quarantine for Metro residents in Negros, Marinduque
Cesar Ramirez, Raymund Catindig, Gilbert Bayoran, Ben Serrano, Jose Rodel Clapano, Eva Visperas, Artemio Dumlao (The Philippine Star) - March 15, 2020 - 12:00am

BACOLOD CITY, Philippines — Visitors from Metro Manila will be considered persons under monitoring (PUMs) due to the coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) and asked to undergo self-quarantine for 14 days upon their arrival in Negros Occidental.

In an executive order (EO) issued on Friday, Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson said the quarantine would be supervised by the provincial health office in coordination with the city or municipal health office.

Health officials said there are 17 PUMs and 107 others under investigation on Negros island.

Marinduque also bars residents of Metro Manila and travelers with confirmed COVID-19 cases.

Gov. Prebistero Velasco Jr. said only Metro Manila residents from areas that remain free of COVID-19 would be allowed entry into the province. However, he said these visitors may have to be placed on home quarantine for 14 days.

Velasco issued another EO imposing a travel ban from countries with confirmed cases.

He ordered rigid screening and institutionalization of surveillance, alert and quarantine among other measures to prevent the entry of persons suspected or confirmed to be infected with the flu virus.

Indefinite class suspension

As this developed, Cagayan Gov. Manuel Mamba announced an indefinite suspension of classes in the province starting yesterday.

Mamba said students are expected to stay home during the class suspension.

Classes are also suspended from March 16 to 20 in Surigao del Norte, Gov. Francisco Matugas said in a memorandum order issued on Friday.

In Marinduque, classes are suspended from March 17 to 20 to disinfect classrooms and school facilities.

Surigao del Norte Bishop Antonieto Cabajog called for the cancellation of graduation rites at diocesan schools and suspension of church activities.

Classes and graduation rites in public and private schools in Zamboanga City, Basilan and Negros Occidental had been suspended.

In Pangasinan, the Bangus Festival in Dagupan City in April was postponed indefinitely, Mayor Marc Brian Lim said in a post on Facebook.

“As prescribed by the Department of Health, all public events, activities and gatherings such as fiestas, reunions, trade fairs, carnivals, balikbayan affairs, concerts, fundraising and other public events that draw a big number of attendees shall be prohibited until further notice,” Lim said.

The Cordillera People’s Alliance also cancelled its annual Cordillera Day set  on April 24 in Lubuangan, Kalinga.

Boats from Sandakan barred

The Zamboanga City government barred the entry of vessels from Sandakan, Malaysia as part of its border control to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Mayor Maria Isabelle Climaco-Salazar directed concerned law enforcement agencies to strictly monitor and deny the entry of other non-conventional and passenger vessels operating in the southern backdoor. 

“We also call on neighboring provinces Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi to implement the same stringent measures to secure our borders from the threat of COVID-19,”  she said. 

Salazar said security control and monitoring are in place to check inbound vessels and passengers after a COVID-19 patient died in Cagayan de Oro on Friday night. 

Meanwhile, Malolos City announced a four-day workweek for its employees starting tomorrow.

“Employees shall report to work from Monday to Thursday and work from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m,” the city government said.

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