MANILA

PNP appeals to public: Stay at home

MANILA. A security guard conducts a temperature check before allowing customers inside an SM mall Saturday, May 16, 2020. (SM Supermalls Facebook)

IF YOU are not authorized to go out of your residence, stay at home.

This was the appeal of the Philippine National Police (PNP) in the wake of Metro Manila residents going out of their homes and flocking to the malls on the first day of the easing of quarantine restrictions Saturday, May 16.

National Task Force against Covid-19 spokesperson Restituto Padilla said the people may not have fully grasped the risks posed by the coronavirus disease (Covid-19).

“Nababahala po ang NTF sa nangyari kahapon. Naging excited po ang ating mga kababayan. Ito po ay siguro ay kakulangan sa ganap na pagkaintindi sa sakit na nangyayari ngayon,” Padilla said.

“Kami po ay humihiling sa sambayanan na huminahon po tayo. Huwag tayong ma-excite,” he added.

Metro Manila, or the National Capital Region, shifted to a modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) on Saturday along with Laguna, Bataan, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga including Angeles City, and Zambales.

Only the cities of Cebu and Mandaue in Cebu remained under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).

The rest of the country is on general community quarantine (GCQ).

PNP spokesperson Brigadier General Bernard Banac said that despite the transition, the people should remain inside the residences to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus or Sars-CoV-2, the pathogen that causes Covid-19.

“Ang PNP ay nagpapasalamat sa publiko sa cooperation na ipinakita nito sa buong 60-day period ng ating ECQ at ngayon ay nasa transition na tayo ng MECQ ay inaasahan namin muli ang cooperation ng publiko,” he said in a radio interview.

“Napakahalaga pa rin na manatili tayo sa mga ating mga bahay na hindi naman kabilang sa APOR (Authorized Persons Outside Residence) at kung tayo naman ay kabilang doon sa mga APOR ay kailangan po na panatilihin po ang social distancing at pagggamit din ng face masks,” he added.

He said the police are coordinating closely with the management of the malls to ensure that minimum health standards are observed.

“Sa unang araw ng ating transition to MECQ ay talagang marami ang lumabas at ang PNP nagpakita naman ng pagkalinga at malasakit at pang-unawa sa mga lumabas kaya ang ginawa natin pinabalik na lamang ‘yung mga motorist na hindi naman kabilang sa APOR at ‘yung mga iba ibang establishments ay pinuntahan din ng ating mga kapulisan upang alamin at tingnan kung talagang sumunod ang mga establishments na ito, ‘yung kanilang mga management at administrators sa mga minimum health standards na katulad ng social distancing at wearing of face masks,” he said.

“Maliban sa mga ulat na yan, yang traffic buildup ay naging mapayapa at maayos at matiwasay ang unang araw ng transition,” Banac added.

Under the MECQ, non-essential but non-leisure businesses are allowed to operate with 50 percent workforce.

Such business establishments may be allowed to fully resume operations in areas under GCQ.

Banac noted that under GCQ and MECQ, persons below 21 and over 59 years old are still not allowed to go outside their home unless it is for the purpose of buying essentials. A quarantine pass is still required and encouraged.

As of May 16, there were 12,305 confirmed cases of coronavirus infection in the country with 2,561 recoveries and 817 deaths. (SunStar Philippines)


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