NEGROS Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson has been on self-isolation since Monday, January 25, after being exposed to a female official of the Department of the Interior and Local Government from Iloilo City.
Provincial Administrator Rayfrando Diaz said that Lacson will undergo an RT-PCR test Wednesday, January 27, along with 18 employees and officials of DILG provincial office.
"We hope the governor's result will be negative so he can return to work," Diaz said.
Diaz said Lacson was exposed to a DILG official who attended the Anti- Drug Summit in Bacolod City on Friday last week.
He said the DILG officials from Iloilo are classified as authorized persons outside residence (Apors), so they are exempted from inspection at the ports.
The governor had direct contact with the official during the summit, he added.
On Monday, January 25, the DILG provincial office in Iloilo confirmed that at least 23 of its employees have tested positive for the virus that causes the coronavirus disease (Covid-19), forcing the agency to declare a work-from-home arrangement.
In an official statement released Monday, DILG-Iloilo said that all personnel who tested positive for the virus are already undergoing isolation in their respective local government units while "extensive contract tracing is being done to determine (possible transmission) up to the second degree of contacts."
Meanwhile, all personnel with established contacts with any of the 23 positive cases have already been informed of the test results and immediately included in the list of contacts for swabbing.
The entire DILG-Iloilo office, including the entire compound, was decontaminated following the incident.
Diaz said that some of the 18 DILG personnel who had come in contact with the Covid-19 official will be accommodated at the Mambukal Summer Resort operated by the Provincial Government for preventive isolation before the results will come out.
The others will be in home isolation, he added.
Diaz appealed to Negrenses to be careful because the Covid-19 virus is "just there."
"We can hurt other people by not being responsible. We have to follow the protocols," he said.