MUNICIPAL mayors comprising all 44 municipalities of the Province of Cebu are taking a united stance against the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) by passing a resolution to adopt “Uniform Guidelines” in their respective municipalities while the state of public health emergency is in effect.
After deliberations over the weekend, the League of Municipalities of the Philippines (LMP) Cebu Chapter passed en masse the Resolution proposed by Liloan Mayor and LMP Cebu President Christina Frasco consolidating and adopting Uniform Guidelines in support of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s Presidential Proclamation 922 and its related issuances, and Governor Gwendolyn F. Garcia’s four Executive Orders directing Province-wide regulations related to Covid-19.
In proposing the Resolution to the mayors, Mayor Frasco said, “In this time of great distress and uncertainty for our country, our united stance as leaders of our beloved Province of Cebu can provide the strength, security, assurance, and protection that our people need.” Closely communicating with the Mayors via the electronic application Viber and via email, Mayor Frasco said she was moved by the mayors’ immediate response to the call to action as they worked towards the approval of the Resolution.
As agreed by the Mayors, the Uniform Guidelines for their Municipalities are in keeping with the need to promote the public health and public welfare of their constituents as a preventive measure to prevent and eliminate the spread of the Covid-19, recognizing the clear and present danger posed by the virus.
Salient provisions of the Resolution include strictly implementing the Province-wide policy on Social Distancing in all public and private establishments and communities; and prohibition and cancellation of mass public gatherings, including fiestas and similar cultural celebrations, sport events, tournaments, and competitions. Exemption is given to meetings held for the purpose of ensuring the peace, health, security, and public safety of the Municipality. All movie houses, pools, recreation centers gyms, cockpits, and other communal activity centers in will be closed, and karaoke is prohibited in all public places and barangays. The Province-wide curfew of 10:00PM to 5:00AM will be implemented, and restaurants, cafés, bars, service (food and drink) related establishments, spas, and parlors shall close at 9:00 PM.
Localizing preventive measures against Covid-19, the Mayors also adopted uniform guidelines for their Municipal and Barangay Officials and employees, and prohibited any of their intended foreign travels until the State of Public Health Emergency is lifted. Online and electronic means of meetings, follow-ups and other government transactions is encouraged, and strict sanitation and hygiene and disinfection of all public areas are to be carried out.
Other sectors regulated per the Uniform Guidelines include all public and private schools whose classes are suspended in all levels by order of the Governor. As well, all commercial and business establishments, malls, resorts, hotels, pensions houses, restaurants and other events places or other similar establishments serving food and beverages are to observe social distancing, proper sanitation and hygiene, and where applicable, to allow cancellation of bookings and reservations without charges or fees.
In places of worship, religious leaders are advised to implement social distancing during the holding of religious activities, and the same should be limited or dispensed with whenever the congregation and religious order allows. Places of worship are also enjoined to issue guidelines in the conduct of their activities in observation of Lent, Ramadan or other pre-scheduled religious activities.
The Mayors also adopted in their Uniform Guidelines the regulation and prohibition on domestic air and sea travels recently implemented by the Provincial Government especially since several seaports and an airport are located in their Municipalities. Adopted as well were the Civil Service Commission Memorandum setting forth Interim Guidelines for Alternative Work Arrangements for Government Workers, and the Resolution of the Inter Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Disease providing guidelines for LGUs outside of Metro Manila in imposing local community quarantine in their respective jurisdictions as the need arises.
Thanking the Mayors for their unified stand in addressing the threat of Covid-19, Mayor Frasco said, “Let us continue to stand united and resolute, and gather strength from our solidarity and faith in Sto. Niño. For Cebu and with all Cebuanos, we shall overcome.” (PR)