Friday, September 24, 2021

Cebu reclassified to GCQ with heightened restrictions

CEBU. Pedestrians wear face masks and face shields, albeit improperly, as they cross Colon St. in Cebu City. (Amper Campaña)

(UPDATED) President Rodrigo Duterte has approved the appeal of Cebu Province to de-escalate community quarantine restrictions, Malacañang announced Sunday evening, August 1, 2021.

From modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ), Cebu Province will now be under general community quarantine (GCQ) with heightened restrictions until August 15.

The reclassification does not cover the highly urbanized cities of Cebu, Mandaue and Lapu-Lapu, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a text message to SunStar.

"IATF still to meet on appeal of Cebu City," he said, referring to the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases, policy-making body for the country's pandemic response.

The three cities were placed on MECQ for August 1 to 15, along with Cebu Province, in IATF Resolution 130-A.

Laguna and Aklan, meanwhile, were escalated to MECQ from the current GCQ with heightened restrictions from August 1 to 15.

Apayao was likewise placed on ECQ from GCQ for the same period.

Under IATF Resolution 130-D, the heightened restrictions are as follows:,

  • Food preparation establishments such as commissaries, restaurants, and eateries may operate with their indoor dine-in services at the venue or seating capacity of 20 percent, and with their al fresco or outdoor dine-in services at the venue or seating capacity of 50 percent.
  • Personal care services, such as beauty salons, beauty parlors, barbershops, and nail spas, may operate up to 30 percent of venue or seating capacity. For this purpose, these establishments shall only provide services that can accommodate the wearing of face masks at all times by patrons/clients and service providers.
  • Meetings, Incentives, Conventions, and Exhibitions (MICE) events and social events in venue establishments shall not be allowed.
  • Outdoor tourist attractions, as may be defined by the Department of Tourism (DOT), shall remain to be allowed at 30 percent venue capacity with strict adherence to minimum public health standards.
  • Under the Safety Seal Certification Program, business establishments awarded Safety Seal Certifications shall be allowed to operate at an additional 10 percentage points beyond the prescribed on-site capacity or venue/seating capacity, whichever is applicable.
  • Indoor sports courts and venues and indoor tourist attractions shall not be allowed to operate.
  • Specialized markets of the DOT such as staycations without age restrictions shall remain to be allowed at such capacities, protocols, and restrictions as may be imposed by the DOT.
  • Interzonal travel shall be allowed subject to restrictions of the local government unit of destination. Point-to-Point travel to areas under GCQ and modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) shall be allowed without age restrictions subject to an RT-PCR test-before-travel requirement for those below 18 years old and above 65, and other protocols and restrictions as may be imposed by the DOT and the LGU of destination.
  • Religious gatherings shall be allowed up to 10 percent of the venue capacity, provided that, there is no objection from the local government unit where the religious gathering may take place, and provided, further, that the LGU may increase the allowable venue capacity up to 30 percent. The religious denominations should strictly observe their submitted protocols and the minimum public health standards. Gatherings for necrological services, wakes, inurnment, funerals for those who died of causes other than Covid-19 shall be allowed, provided that the same shall be limited to immediate family members, upon satisfactory proof of their relationship with the deceased and with full compliance with the prescribed minimum public health standards for the duration of the activity.
  • Other provisions of the Omnibus Guidelines on the Implementation of Community Quarantine in the Philippines, as amended, not affected by the foregoing shall continue to be in effect including those on interzonal travel into and out of the aforementioned areas and the operation of public transportation. The use of active transportation shall likewise be promoted.

As of July 31, Cebu Province had 2,797 active coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) cases while Cebu City had 2,688 active cases. There were also 1,130 active cases in Lapu-Lapu City and 961 in Mandaue City. (Marites Villamor-Ilano / SunStar Philippines)


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