Bacolod, Lanao del Sur under MECQ
Gilbert Bayoran, Alexis Romero (The Philippine Star) - September 9, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Bacolod City and Lanao del Sur have been placed under modified enhanced community quarantine or MECQ from Sept. 8 to 30.

President Duterte approved the recommendation of the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases for the MECQ declaration due to the rising number of coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19 cases in the two areas.

Lanao del Sur Gov. Mamintal Alonto Adiong Jr. and Bacolod City Mayor Evelio Leonardia also sought a shift to MECQ.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III told the President during a meeting with IATF members on Monday that Bacolod City logged 462 cases in four days or an average of 135 per day.

COVID-19 task force chief implementer Carlito Galvez said Bacolod has more cases compared to Iligan City, which has been under MECQ since Sept. 1.

Iligan City officials had earlier asked the regional IATF to allow them to return to the strictest ECQ as confirmed cases, mostly local transmission, surged.

Bacolod logged 1,904 cases compared to the 1,551 total in 31 towns and cities in Negros Occidental.

Galvez is set to arrive in Bacolod today to meet with city officials.

Bacolod was placed under general community quarantine (GCQ) on Aug. 31.

Lanao del Sur, which used to be under modified GCQ, logged more than 300 cases, the highest in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

Meanwhile, the IATF also approved the requests of local goverment units in Western Visayas, Iligan City and Lanao del Sur to suspend the return of locally stranded individuals.

Presidential spokesman Harry Roque said the moratorium, which took effect on Monday, is until Sept. 21.

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