PNP: Still no leisure, non-essential trips

Emmanuel Tupas (The Philippine Star) - June 4, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The easing of quarantine restrictions in Metro Manila and other parts of the country is not a pass for people to go on leisure or non-essential trips, the Philippine National Police (PNP) clarified yesterday.

PNP deputy chief Lt. Gen. Guillermo Eleazar made the clarification after announcing on Tuesday that they would no longer require travel authority for trips after Metro Manila and other provinces were placed under general community quarantine.

The government has imposed strict lockdowns for more than two months to contain the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Eleazar, who heads Joint Task Force COVID Shield, said the initiative is meant for indispensable travels similar to the cases of locally stranded individuals and medical emergencies.

“Nililinaw po natin, hindi po kayo lalabas para mamasyal o pumunta sa mga kamag-anak niyo na hindi niyo nakita for some time,” he said in an interview with “The Chiefs” on One News on Tuesday night.

Going to other cities in Metro Manila and the provinces just to buy goods are also not allowed, according to Eleazar.

“Kung kayo po ay lalabas lang para bumili ng pagkain at iba pang kagamitan, hindi po dapat,” he said.

Eleazar explained that crossing the borders of Metro Manila and provinces without a travel authority would only be allowed during emergencies such as death in the family, medical surgery, dialysis treatment and other life and death situations.

He warned the people they could face sanctions if they are caught by police at security checkpoints.

Eleazar earlier said people from the provinces returning to Metro Manila and vice versa are still required to secure a travel authority.

To expedite the process, the issuance of the document was delegated to police station commanders.

Local officials in the provinces can also delay the entry of people from Metro Manila as a precaution against COVID-19, according to Eleazar.

He said police commanders must first inform the local government units of the people with travel authority who will go to their areas. This will give the LGUs time to prepare.

“They cannot refuse the entry of these people, but they can request for delay kung paano na halimbawa iyong kanilang facility kasi may kaniya-kaniya silang protocols,” Eleazar said.

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