DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 11 July) — Mayor Sara Duterte warned she would order the padlock of food establishments, including those owned by Indian nationals, amid complaints that some of them do not strictly adhere to the basic health protocols to prevent transmission of coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Duterte issued the warning in response to complaints against non-compliant Indian restaurants raised during her live interview over Davao City Disaster Radio (DCDR 87.5) on Friday.
She encouraged citizens to report non-compliant establishments to the local government as a basis for their closure.
“In that case, they can give the names of the stores so that Business Bureau could padlock the establishments,” she said.
Previously, the mayor said the management of offices and businesses in the city must ensure there is strict adherence to health protocols and screening procedures such as checking of symptoms, putting in place foot bath, alcohol, and hand-washing facilities, observing social distancing, wearing of face-masks and face shields, and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces.
Duterte said she had received reports about the behavior of some Indian nationals who gather in groups without wearing face-masks.
The city has a substantial number of Indian nationals, many of them medical students at the Davao Medical School Foundation, Inc. Before the lockdowns due to COVID-19, there was a row of restaurants selling Indian food outside the school premises.
Under the Omnibus Guidelines on the Implementation of Community Quarantine in the Philippines of the COVID-19 Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Disease, the dine-in operations of food establishments are permitted at 50% under the modified general community quarantine.
The city is under MGCQ from July 1 to July 15.
As of July 10, Department of Health-Davao recorded 29 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the total to 718 cases with 34 deaths and 433 recoveries.
Of the total cases, 537 are in Davao City, 66 in Davao del Norte, 28 in Davao del Sur, 37 in Davao de Oro, 46 in Davao Oriental, and four in Davao Occidental.
Amid the rising COVID-19 cases in the city, Duterte added the city would not appeal to the national task force to place Davao under a stricter general community quarantine.
“We don’t plan to appeal to go back to GCQ. What we will do is try to catch up or cope with our situation under MGCQ despite our situation where we see rising cases,” she said.
She said the local government has intensified its campaign to stay home, wear face mask in public, maintain physical distancing, and do frequent handwashing and bringing of pocket-sized alcohol containers.
“We need to intensify our campaign so that the confirmed COVID-19 cases will not rise rapidly because these four will be of great help to reduce our confirmed cases here,” she said. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)