Editorial: Fear of complacency

DAVAO City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio said she wants Davao City to shift to modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) to allow the reopening of more businesses and increase the capacity of those currently operating.

However, she fears that as restrictions are easesd residents in Davao City will become complacent.

"Of course, gusto nato mag-MGCQ. Ang dili lang nato gusto sa MGCQ is that mapareho siya last year nga abi sa mga tao kung MGCQ (we wanted to shift to MGCQ, but we don’t want to experience what happened last year to MGCQ), and this is the lowest form of community quarantine, kanang mawala ang vigilance and pag-strictly follow sa (some won’t be vigilant or will fail to strictly follow our) minimum health protocols," Duterte-Carpio said on Monday, April 26, in an interview on 87.5 FM Davao City Disaster Radio.

The sentiments from Duterte-Carpio on easing restrictions and shifting to a more relaxed quarantine status is nothing new. It can be recalled in 2020, the mayor appealed to the public to self regulate after she announced that the city will be lifting its 24-hour liquor ban, curfew, and food and medicine pass when the city shifted to MGCQ.

A few weeks later, the city started to experience a sudden increase in Covid-19 cases that led to the city reimposing stricter measures and reverting to GCQ.

At present, the Covid-19 cases in the city has decreased and the city has been classified as a low risk area. The current situation of the city qualifies it to shift to MGCQ. However, as she said, she fears the complacency of the people will lead to another wave of Covid-19 cases.

"Ing-ani man gud usually ang mga tao ba. Mawala ilahang kahadlok pag makita nila nga gamay ang kaso (That is the usual human nature, wherein their fear will subside when they see that cases go downwards)," she said.

The mayor's fears about the complacency of others is valid.

It was earlier reported by the Octa research group that there has been a decline in the compliance of the public to the minimum health standards, which may have contributed to the spike in Covid-19 cases in the National Capital Region.

Likewise, in an Associated Press report, people began to relax following the "government’s mixed messaging and its premature declarations of victory over the virus." The Covid-19 situation in India is overwhelming the Indian health sector.

A second wave is scary. We are seeing right before our eyes how hard the second wave is hitting cities and countries. Some cities are placed under lockdowns and local economies are placed in another standstill.

Now, the Dabawenyos have adjusted into the pandemic and the economy has started to revive slowly, we cannot afford to go into a second wave.

Therefore, with the decrease in Covid-19 cases in Davao City, we have to continue to be vigilant and comply with the minimum health standards.

Everyone is struggling right now and another lockdown could cause an economic collapse and more jobs will be lost. Wear your face masks, observe social distancing, and wash or sanitize your hands regularly.


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