AT LEAST 40 persons in the Province of Cebu may spend the rest of their enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) at the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center for violating measures on social distancing amid the ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.

Of the number, 37 were arrested in Talisay City for flocking to the beach and rivers on Easter Sunday, April 12, 2020, despite Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia’s stern warning against public gatherings during the province-wide ECQ.

The governor issued Executive Order 5-L-1 on April 11, prescribing additional prohibitions within the province relative to the use of beaches and other bodies of water.

The measure, though, only prohibits leisure activities and does not cover fishery and aquatic livelihood.

Operatives of the Talisay City Police Station apprehended a total of 41 persons, four of whom were minors. They were turned over to the Department of Social Welfare and Development.

The remaining 37 persons hailed from Barangays Dumlog, Candulawan, Tangke and Cansojong.

Fourteen of those who were arrested came from the coastal barangay of Tangke.

They were detained at the Cansojong Barangay Gym before they were brought to Capitol for an audience with the governor on Monday afternoon, April 13.

Another four persons, this time from Brgy. Putat in the Municipality of Tuburan, also provoked the ire of the governor.

The four men, who are in their late teens, uploaded a video of them drinking liquor while sharing only one glass on March 18.

Although the ECQ has not been in effect until 12:01 a.m. on March 30, the Provincial Board had already passed an ordinance laying strict measures against the spread of the Covid-19.

Garcia reiterated the need to strictly adhere to the social distancing measures and practice proper hygiene amid the continued spread of the Covid-19.

Provincial Attorney Donito Villa said charges for violating Provincial Ordiance 2020-005 in relation to Article 151 of the Revised Penal Code will be filed against the arrested persons.

Violators will have to pay a fine of P5,000 or face imprisonment not exceeding one year, or both at the discretion of the court.

A total of 70 persons were arrested for violating the ECQ on Easter Sunday, said Cebu Police Provincial Office Director Col. Roderick Mariano.

Three persons were also caught in Danao City and another three in the City of Bogo and Bantayan town, respectively.

Meanwhile, 20 persons were also arrested in Cebu City for hitting the beach on Easter Sunday.

Fifty-six individuals were also nabbed for organizing a cockfight on Good Friday, April 10. (RTF with reports from AYB)