Repatriation of stranded people suspended

Romina Cabrera - The Philippine Star
Repatriation of stranded people suspended
Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said over the weekend that he approved the suspension of returning stranded individuals to some provinces in Western Visayas.
Miguel de Guzman, file

MANILA, Philippines — The government has heeded a call by local government units (LGUs) to suspend the return of stranded individuals to the provinces due to the surge of coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19 cases in the Visayas.

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said over the weekend that he approved the suspension of returning stranded individuals to some provinces in Western Visayas.

The repatriation of stranded people to Negros Occidental and Iloilo is suspended for two weeks starting yesterday, Lorenzana said.

“We have to do this because the LSIs could be the carriers of the virus to the provinces. Data from the cities of Bacolod showed this,” Lorenzana said, referring to locally stranded individuals who are currently in Manila and seeking to go home to their provinces.

Lorenzana said the government needs to iron out the procedure in repatriating stranded people as well as overseas Filipino workers, who also want to return to their hometowns.

These people may have to wait longer before they could be sent home, Lorenzana said.

“They have to wait and they should not go to the airport or seaport. We have to get the LGUs to agree to receive them,” Lorenzana said.

The LGUs cited their limited quarantine facilities in asking the government to temporarily suspend the repatriation of stranded people.

As this developed, the provincial government of Pampanga is considering asking the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Emerging Infectious Diseases to revert the province either to enhanced or general community quarantine, should the local cases continue to surge.

A week ago, the province was placed under modified general community quarantine after the cases slowed down.

But in just a span of 10 days, 25 new cases were recorded in the province, according to Gov. Dennis Pineda.

Eight of the cases have travelled to Manila, Pineda said, as he attributed the rise of the cases on the resumption of travel to and from Metro Manila.

Meanwhile, Angeles City Mayor Carmelo Lazatin Jr., shut down the Pampanga Public Market after a 21-year-old vendor died of COVID-19 on Tuesday.

Relatives of the victim have been placed under quarantine as the city government initiated contact tracing and sanitation of the market.

All vendors will undergo rapid testing, Lazatin said.

In Pangasinan, three persons tested positive for the virus, bringing the number of cases in the province to to 94.

The cases were recorded in the towns of Calasiao and San Jacinto, and San Carlos City.

In Zamboanga City, 11 persons including nine inmates and two residents, tested positive for COVID-19.

The figure, based on test results released on Saturday night, brought to 36 the total number of active cases in the city. Ding Cervantes, Ric Sapnu, Cesar Ramirez, Roel Pareño

vuukle comment


  • Latest
  • Trending
Are you sure you want to log out?

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

Get Updated:

Signup for the News Round now

or sign in with