Iloilo City under MECQ for 15 days
Jennifer Rendon (The Philippine Star) - September 26, 2020 - 12:00am

ILOILO CITY , Philippines — This city has been placed under stricter modified enhanced community quarantine or MECQ from Sept. 25 to Oct. 9 due to a spike in the number of coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19 cases.

The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases or IATF approved on Thursday Resolution 74, which reclassified the quarantine status in the city upon the request of the local government, presidential spokesman Harry Roque said.

“Its community quarantine classification after the date shall be decided upon by the IATF based on the COVID-19 situation in the locality,” the resolution read.

Iloilo City accounted for 73 of the 260 cases recorded in Western Visayas on Thursday.

The city recorded 2,037 cases, or 19.90 percent of the 10,234 total in the region.  At least 895 are active cases, with 1,090 recoveries and two deaths.

Iloilo City Mayor Jerry Treñas said the local COVID team initially recommended a 15-day general community quarantine.

Treñas issued Executive Order 149 on the MECQ declaration.

“Iloilo City has experienced a steady increase of COVID-19 cases from Sept. 1 up to the present, including local transmission of the virus in almost all sectors of the community,” the EO read.

“The cases in the city continue to shoot up and we need your cooperation to help eliminate the virus. We need to act fast to protect the lives of Ilonggos,” Treñas said.

He said a negative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction swab test is a requirement for city hall employees and officials.

120-hour lockdown

Treñas had earlier issued EO 148 placing 13 barangays on lockdown for 120 hours, which started on Tuesday, to prevent the spread of the virus.

These are Barangays Simon Ledesma, Bolilao, Calumpang, Mansaya, Sooc Arevalo, Ortiz, San Isidro Jaro, Obrero, M. H. del Pilar Jaro, Punong Lapuz, Aguinaldo Lapaz, Lapuz Sur and Concepcion.

Bacolod City, Iligan City and Lanao del Sur are the other areas under MECQ.  The stricter quarantine is effective until the end of this month.

Meanwhile, a one-year-old girl is the youngest among the 14 new confirmed cases in Pangasinan.

The baby is among the six new cases in Bolinao town.

Pangasinan had 797 COVID-19 cases as of yesterday. At least 286 remain confined in hospitals and isolation facilities. – Christina Mendez, Eva Visperas

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