Self-regulation 'fails'

File photo

WITH the steady increase in active Covid-19 cases in Davao City, Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio said the city will continue to impose stricter measures against Covid-19 after Dabawenyos "failed" to self-regulate.

Duterte-Carpio said in a bid to slow the spread of the disease, the City will be implementing stricter measures on mass gatherings and non-essential activities, which are the main reasons for the increase in Covid-19 cases in the city based on the findings from contact tracing.

Based on the October 25 data of the Department of Health (DOH)-Davao Region, the city has a total of 3,228 Covid-19 cases, 837 of which are active cases.

For two days straight, the city recorded over a hundred cases -- October 25 when it logged 108 new cases and October 24 with 118 new cases.

"There is a need to regulate mass gatherings, kay mao kini ang ginatawag nga opportunities for super-spreaders of the virus (since these are opportunities for super-spreaders of the virus)," Duterte-Carpio said in an interview on 87.5 FM Davao City Disaster Radio on Monday, October 26.

With this, Duterte-Carpio said she will be issuing Executive Order (EO) 57, providing detailed provisions on the regulation of mass gatherings.

The EO, entitled "An Order Regulating Mass Gatherings and Prohibiting Non-Essential Travel Within Davao City," will be implemented until December 31, 2020.

Since Davao City is under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ), the mayor said people should still be staying at home despite the easing of some quarantine restrictions and should only go out for essential purposes such as work and buying of basic goods and services.

"Mao kini nakalimtan sa tao nga aduna kita'y community quarantine. Therefore, kita dapat naa sulod sa atong panimalay, except for [buying of] essential goods and services, or [for] work or business (People forget that we are still under a community quarantine. Therefore, we should be staying at home and should only go out for essential goods and services or for work or business)," she said.

"Ang nahitabo is daghan na kaayo ang nanggawas, nagtapok, nag-gimik, nagchika dinha sa coffee shop. There goes ang atoang gi-ingong nga self-regulation, bagsak. Bagsak ang Davao City (What happened is that many are going out of their residences to attend gatherings and can be seen hanging out with their friends at coffee shops. Davao City failed in self-regulation)," she added.

The mayor previously urged Dabawenyos to self-regulate following the lifting of the 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew and the food and medicine (FM) pass in August this year.

"We want people to self-regulate. Meaning, kahibalo sila nga dunay quarantine, kahibalo sila nga dunay stay-at-home, pero wala nata'y regulation to make sure nga they stay at home (This means that they understand we are still in a state of quarantine and there is still the need to stay at home)," she said in a previous radio interview.

She added, "We want people to understand nga kinahanglan mag-gikan na sa ilaha na karon. Mag-practice na sila. Because remember, wala gihapo'y bakuna, tambal, and this will be here, ang Covid-19, until wala ta kahibalo hangtud kanus-a (We want people to understand that they should practice and observe health measures because there is still no vaccine or medicine against Covid-19)."

However, because of the increase in Covid-19 cases, the mayor reimposed the curfew, this time from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m., beginning October 15, to regulate unnecessary gatherings in the evening. The liquor ban was also reimposed and set at the same time as the curfew.

The mayor said she did not reimpose the 24-hour liquor ban for the sake of establishments dependent on serving alcoholic drinks.

"Ang alcohol is not the problem sa gawas, it is the problem sa sulod sa mga residences. Kay dinha naga-tapok ang mga tao mag inom (Alcohol is not the problem when going outside. It is becoming a problem because people are drinking at their residences with their friends)," she said.

As for the calls to reimpose the FM pass, the mayor said the city will instead implement the QR code system to help the city track the movement of a certain individual, which will be helpful during contact tracing.

Meanwhile, the EO also reiterates the city's order of banning parties and celebrations, which would cause mass gatherings. These include Halloween and Christmas parties.

Birthday parties, she said, should only be limited to family members.


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