THE Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases has approved the extension of the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in the province of Albay and Zamboanga City, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said Saturday, May 2.
During the Laging Handa program online, Roque said the recommendation has been submitted to President Rodrigo Duterte for approval.
"Ang rekomendasyon ng IATF na i-impose ang ECQ sa Albay, Zamboanga ay pinadala na ni Presidente para sa kanyang approval," Roque said.
The local governments of Isabela, Butuan, Camarines Sur, La Union and Lanao del Norte have also requested for an ECQ extension.
The League of Mayors of the Philippines in Albay raised concern over IATF's decision to put Albay province among the areas that eased restrictions and shifted to general community quarantine (GCQ) on May 1.
Albay Governor Al Francis Bichara said residents of Albay have appealed for an extended ECQ in the area because of rising cases of novel coronavirus infection.
"Albay residents have expressed their reluctance placing Albay under GCQ status. Their reactions include: the province is not yet ready; scary; dangerous, flatten the curve, doubts, and cases still increasing,” Bichara said.
Under Executive Order 112, which the President issued on April 30, only the following areas remain under ECQ until May 15:
-National Capital Region
-Central Luzon (except Aurora province)
-Benguet including Baguio City
-Iloilo province, including Iloilo City
-Cebu province, including Cebu City
Under ECQ, public transportation systems are suspended and only essential personnel and frontliners are allowed to move about. Only one person per household is allowed to go on a supply run.
Duterte first imposed a GCQ over Metro Manila in March 15. He expanded the coverage to Luzon and intensified measures into an ECQ on March 17.
The quarantine measures are part of the government’s strategy to address the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) epidemic in the country. (Jove T. Moya/SunStar Philippines)