Quezon City eases curfew, liquor regulation
Janvic Mateo (The Philippine Star) - October 23, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Following the agreement made by Metro Manila mayors earlier this week, Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte has approved the revised guidelines relaxing quarantine protocols in the city, including shortened curfew hours and longer period for the sale of alcoholic beverages.

From the previous 10 p.m. to 5 a.m., public safety hours in the city now start at 12 midnight and end at 4 a.m.

Essential activities such as market operations, food take-out and delivery, pharmacies, hospitals, convenience stores and delivery of goods are still allowed to operate around the clock.

Licensed liquor dealers are allowed to sell from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., from the previous 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Restaurants, hotels and other establishments may serve alcoholic beverages to dine-in customers from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., provided that these are consumed inside the establishments with meals.

Drinking along sidewalks remains prohibited. Drinking with friends or relatives at homes is discouraged to prevent the transmission of the virus.

Under the revised guidelines, persons aged 18 to 65 are allowed to leave their homes provided that they have an identification card or barangay certification.

Those below 18 and above 65 may only leave their homes “only for essential reasons.”

Quarantine passes will no longer be required, but these should be honored as alternative to IDs.

Public and private cemeteries are closed from Oct. 29 to Nov. 4, except for burials.

Gyms, fitness centers, sports facilities, outdoor cinemas and personal grooming establishments may operate under certain limitations in line with national government policies.

Indoor cinemas, karaoke bars, amusement parks, libraries, archives, museums, children’s playhouses and day care centers are still not allowed to operate.

Vigilance, public cooperation

During a virtual convention on efforts to address the COVID-19 pandemic yesterday, Belmonte reiterated the need for the cooperation of all stakeholders to prevent a surge in new cases.

“The numbers are promising. But we can’t relax and we can’t let our guard down. No, not yet,” she said. “The public can’t be lulled into feeling safe. We need to push harder.”

Belmonte said continued vigilance is needed despite improving numbers such as the high recovery rate of 91 percent in the city.

Data showed that out of more than 21,000 cases of COVID-19 in Quezon City, 19,840 have recovered while 1,387 remain active. The fatality rate is at three percent, with 616 deaths.

Despite this, Belmonte said all hands have to be on deck to ensure victory against COVID-19.

Payatas families relocated

Meanwhile, the Quezon City government has relocated several families displaced by a landslide in Barangay Payatas last week.

Belmonte said six of the 25 families affected by the landslide were transferred to a housing project in the barangay.

The local government is coordinating with the National Housing Authority for the relocation of the remaining families, said Jojo Conejero, acting assistant department head of the city’s Housing, Community Development and Resettlement Department.

The families were living in a two-story residential building that was damaged by a landslide on Oct. 15 due to heavy rains.

Belmonte said the city government would provide financial assistance to the affected families for the installation of utilities in the relocation site.

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