THE Cebu City-stranded persons must travel back to their home provinces within 48 hours after receiving a certification that they had tested negative of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
However, this did not happen to the 11 Covid-19 positive students who arrived in their home province of Maguindanao in Mindanao on May 15, 2020, according City Attorney Rey Gealon, who also serves as City Hall spokesperson.
Gealon said the students completed the health requirements needed for their travel, which included quarantine and swab testing, on May 8. Their trip back to Maguindanao happened five days later on May 13.
He said the validity of the health clearance issued by the City Health Office is only within 48 hours.
The investigating team speculated that the students got infected with Covid-19 after May 8.
Aside from complying with the health requirements, the students also complied with the travel pass and repatriation clearance last May 8.
Gealon said the students stayed in various areas during their stay in Cebu, including Lapu-Lapu City, Barangays Guadalupe and Sambag 2 in Cebu City, and on Plaridel St. and Osmeña Blvd. in Cebu City.
The students were among those who availed themselves of the government’s Balik Probinsya Program.
There were 16 students in the batch, and four of them yielded negative results in the real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction test.
They stayed in Cebu for the architectural board examination. However, the examination was postponed because of the crisis brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic and they got stranded in Cebu when the enhanced community quarantine was implemented last March.
The Cebu City Government is in contact with the Department of Health in Maguindanao. (JJL)