Cebu News

In Mandaue, Lapu-Lapu no date set for ECQ lifting

Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines — The imposition of the Enhanced Community Quarantine in the cities of Lapu-Lapu and Mandaue continues "until further notice."

Lapu-Lapu City Mayor Junard "Ahong" Chan has announced that the city's ECQ, which is supposed to end this April 28, will be extended to May 15 or until further notice.

It was likewise posted on his Facebook account via the city's information office that it is extended up to May 18 or until further notice. Such conflicting dates, however, sow confusion among the netizens.

Lapu-Lapu City Information Officer Oscar Pineda Jr. said that according to City Attorney James Sayson, there is no date actually when it will be lifted.

"Kay we will see the situation here in Lapu-Lapu. Kay pwede nga okay na sila sa Maynila by May 15 pero kita diri dili pa okay.  So, until further notice lang jud," Pineda said.

Chan also assured in a meeting with barangay officials last Friday the unhampered delivery of basic commodities, especially food, to public and satellite markets, and rolling stores.

As agreed by barangay officials, clustering continues to ensure there are nearby satellite markets, grocery stores and supermarkets for the convenience of the residents. Delivery of fuels, like gasoline and crude, will continue unimpeded.

Chan also said there are now lockdowns within a 10-meter radius from houses of COVID positive patients. The city will supply food in these lockdown areas.

 With the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in the city, Chan said that the city government will purchase additional testing kits, through the Department of Health (DOH), in preparation for mass testing in both the private and public sectors.

Priorities in swab testing are the front liners, while private companies will be required to conduct massive testing for all their employees at the company’s own expense.

 The mayor added that the city will spend for the swab testing in the contact tracing of COVID positive cases and swab testing of city hall employees.

  Chan also authorized barangay officials to initiate entry and exit points in their areas. He said street closures are allowed but must be in coordination with the police.

In the same manner, all police protocols or security initiatives must be in coordination with the barangays.

 In Mandaue City, Mayor Jonas Cortes made no new announcement yet, as his ECQ order implemented last March 30 sets no date of the lifting.  Mandaue City Mayor Jonas Cortes said that ECQ lifting should be based on scientific data.

"Ang pag-lift sa ECQ must be based on a scientific data dili lang kay mata-mata," said the mayor in his Facebook live interview.

Cortes said that the COVID-19 pandemic will continue as long as there are no vaccines available and that the second wave of the disease is crucial, a reason why lifting of the ECQ should not be made hastily. GAN (FREEMAN)

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