LSIs barred in Negros cities, Northern Samar anew

Miriam Desacada (The Philippine Star) - October 24, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines  — Locally stranded individuals (LSIs) have been barred again from returning to Northern Samar and the cities of San Carlos and Victorias in Negros Occidental for two weeks.

The Eastern Visayas Regional Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases approved the request of the provincial IATF to suspend the arrival of LSIs in Northern Samar from Oct. 20 to Nov. 3 due to an increase in the number of coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19 cases.

Local officials said the continuous influx of LSIs and returning overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) would overwhelm their quarantine facilities.

Northern Samar was placed under general community quarantine following a spike in confirmed cases. At least 23 barangays are under modified enhanced community quarantine.

The Department of Health (DOH) regional office said the province logged 416 cases, 261 of them active on Thursday.

The Western Visayas IATF said the return of LSIs in San Carlos City and Victorias City was suspended starting yesterday until Nov. 6 and Oct. 30, respectively.

Local officials sought the ban to pave the way for disinfection and decongestion of quarantine facilities.

San Carlos City Mayor Renato Gustilo also ordered a ban on non-essential travel after the city logged a total of 179 cases, 108 of them active.

Northern Samar and Negros Occidental barred LSIs and returning OFWs in July and June, respectively.

COVID-hitmining villages

In Benguet, 74 people in Itogon, mostly miners and their family members, tested positive for the virus on Thursday. Nine of the patients are children aged two to 11.

Itogon Mayor Victorio Palangdan locked down mining communities in Sitio Luneta in Barangay Loacan; Sangilo, Poblacion; Balatoc, Virac and Eastern Saddle, Ampucao to pave the way for contact tracing.

Fifteen residents of Barangay Loacan had earlier contracted the virus after attending a wake.

Shortened curfew

As this developed in Baguio City, Mayor Benjamin Magalong shortened curfew by two hours.

In an executive order issued on Thursday, Magalong set the curfew from midnight to 4 a.m.

Baguio recorded 80 recoveries, 37 cases and three deaths on Thursday.

At least 545 are active cases.

In Zamboanga City, the barangay hall in Camino Nuevo was closed after the village chief was infected.

The DOH office in Zamboanga peninsula said Zamboanga City recorded 1,042 cases as of yesterday.

In Bataan, 12 new recoveries, the oldest a 91-year-old woman, were recorded on Wednesday. – Raymund Catindig, Gilbert Bayoran, Artemio Dumlao, Roel Pareño, Ric Sapnu

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