DESPITE Davao City being placed under Alert Level 3, Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio said the City Government will no longer be imposing the mandatory reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) to all travelers going to the city for the whole duration of the Covid-19 pandemic.

"Dili na ta magbalik sa 'test before travel' because duna ay bakuna, and duna nay boosters, and duna nay tambal, kanang molnupiravir and kanang uban pang tambal na ginagamit sa sulod sa hospital kung duna kay (We will not be reimposing the 'test before travel' since we already have the vaccines and booster shots, and also the medicines such as molnupiravir and other medicines used in hospitals to treat patients with) moderate or severe case of Covid-19," Duterte-Carpio said on Monday, Jauary 17, in an interview on 87.5 FM Davao City Disaster Radio.

The City Government issued Executive Order (EO) 2 on January 17, extending the removal of the mandatory RT-PCR result requirement to all travelers entering the city via land, sea, and air until June 30.

EO 2 extends EO 66, which lapsed on January 15.

Duterte-Carpio also explained that the Sars-CoV-2, which causes Covid-19, has a 14-day incubation period.

"Taas pud kaayo ang 14 days na incubation period (The 14 days incubation period of the virus is quite long)... So posibleng day 2 ka nisulod, tested ka, negative ka, pero day 10 or day 11, nagsugod na kag manifest og symptoms ayha pa ka nag-positive (For example, you enter the city on the second day after you were exposed, your test could yield a negative result. However, on the 10th or 11th day, it is possible you would experience symptoms and that would be the time you test positive for the virus),” she said.

She added the said policy does “outweigh” the loss of the city’s economy.

“So the test before travel do outweigh the loss nato sa atoang (of our) local economy. Ang kanang burden niya sa airlines, and kanang burden niya sa inconvenience and expenses sa mga travelers (This does outweigh the burden of the airlines, and the inconvenience and expenses among passengers),” Duterte-Carpio said.

Meanwhile, the Davao City Tourism Operations Office (CTOO), in an advisory, reminded Dabawenyos who will be traveling from and to National Capital Region (NCR) that only fully vaccinated travelers will be allowed to travel beginning January 17.

This is in accordance with Department of Transportation Department Order 2022-001 and Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines Memo Order 002-2022 “Limiting Access of Public Transportation to Vaccinated Population.”

Duterte-Carpio clarified that the DOTr mandate will only apply to areas under the agency's supervision such as airports.

With this, she reiterated that the city is not restricting the movement of unvaccinated individuals.