Davao to be put under enhanced community quarantine

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 2 April) – The entire city will be placed under a 15-day enhanced community quarantine starting 9 p.m. of April 4 to control the spread of novel coronavirus disease (Covid-19), Mayor Sara Duterte said.

A man wearing a surgical mask crosses the intersection of San Pedro and CM Recto Streets in Davao City on 16 March 2020. Davao City is under community quarantine amid threats of COVID-19 infection. MindaNews photo by MANMAN DEJETO

In a live interview over Davao City Disaster Radio (DCDR) 87.5 on Thursday, she said Executive Order 23, issued on April 2, intends to compel the people to “stay in their houses to arrest the spread of infection” after seeing that the current community quarantine implemented since March 15 has been ineffective in preventing the movement of people.

She pointed out that people must avoid leaving their houses as local health authorities have confirmed cases of Covid-19 acquired through local transmission.

The order provides that all jeepneys must stop their operation. Exempted from the order are those hired by the government or offices and businesses that may remain open during the ECQ.

It allows private vehicles and taxis with one driver and one passenger in front and one at the back, observing physical distancing; tricycles with one driver and one passenger in front and one at the back; single rider motorcycle or bicycle; and free bus rides from the government.

It requires all individuals to carry and, whenever asked by law enforcement or barangay checkpoints, present their employee’s ID or food and medicine (FM) pass with valid ID.

The ban on alcoholic drinks from 5:00 p.m to 8:a.m. will continue, Duterte said.

Except in cases of emergencies, the people cannot go out of their houses during curfew hours from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m.

Duterte said government offices must work from home and leave a minimal number of employees to continue work in offices. Exempted are those involved in security, health, social services, sanitation and disaster, who must continue to work in full force.

She said all private establishments and offices must close.

Only the following may remain open: groceries, supermarkets, wet markets/palengkes, food commissaries, food processing or manufacturing, food delivery services, wholesale food outlets, convenience stores, sari-sari stores, hospitals, medical laboratories, pharmacies, drugstores, other health services/personnel, banks and ATMs, savings and credit cooperatives;

Money-transfer services and bayad centers, courier services, other delivery services, doctor’s and dentist’s clinics, gas stations, water refilling stations, LPG stations, business process outsourcing/call centers, and mass media outlets.

Workers of establishments exempted from the temporary closure are not covered by the curfew, according to Duterte.

She said barangay officials have started releasing food and medicine pass, which would be used to buy food, medicines or go to the hospital from 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. The pass will indicate the names of two individuals but only one named person can use it at any given time.

No minor, senior citizen, pregnant women, sick, and immunocompromised individuals can go out of the residence or dwelling except to go to the hospital, medical or allied medical institutions, the order said.

It added that those living alone may get a pass or whenever possible and if appropriate, ask a neighbor or a friend to help them buy food and medicines. Whenever possible, employers must assign their senior citizens to work from home. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)