Reestablishment of ‘Safe Davao QR’ must come first before regionwide QR system unification

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 10 Nov) – The Safe Davao QR (DQR), the city’s contactless contact-tracing system, may be unified with the QR systems of other local government units (LGUs) in the region, but it will be possible only once the city government reestablishes its own system, which bogged down last October 4 due to high traffic.

Mayor Sara Duterte made the statement during her interview over Davao City Disaster Radio (DCDR 87.5) on Monday in reaction to the call made by Dr. Cleo Fe Tabada, head of the Regional Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit of the Department of Health (DOH)-Davao, to unify the QR systems of all areas in the region for a “bigger contact-tracing system.”

The mayor said the city government previously discussed the integration of the QR systems with the Island Garden City of Samal (IGACOS) in Davao del Norte and the provincial government of Davao de Oro.

“But, for now, the integration will come after we establish our own registration system for business establishments this Wednesday, and the registration for individuals, the announcement for which will be made later,” she said.

The mayor said the IGACOS was the first among the city’s adjacent LGUs, including Panabo in Davao del Norte and Santa Cruz town of Davao del Sur, to show intent to have an integrated system with the city.

“These three areas – IGACOS, Santa Cruz, and Panabo – are the closest to us with daily interchange of people,” she said.

The local service providers of the city assured the unification is possible, according to Duterte.

Davao Region, considered as the epicenter of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Mindanao, reported 6,524 total cases as of November 9, with 1,830 active, 4,460 recoveries, and 234 deaths. Of this total, the DOH-Davao reported that 4,508 were reported in Davao City, 344 in Davao de Oro, 695 in Davao del Norte, 490 in Davao del Sur, 107 in Davao Occidental, and 380 in Davao Oriental.

But Duterte said the discussion on the QR code system integration must be done at the level of Davao Region COVID-19 Task Force (RTF) and Regional Inter-Agency Task Force for COVID-19 (RIATF), chaired by Office of the Civil Defense-Davao director Manolito P. Orense and Department of Interior and Local Government-Davao director Alex C. Roldan, respectively.

“Maybe, the call for a unified QR code for Davao Region must be done before RTF and RIATF… because they are the ones that can handle the entire region, with regard to matters concerning COVID-19. That’s the work of RIATF and RTF,” she said.

The local government of Davao will reopen registration for business establishments in the city on Wednesday, and will make a separate announcement for the start of registration of city residents and non-residents, Duterte said.

The registration links will be created separately for business establishments and individuals to avoid congesting the website, she said.

The mandatory enforcement of the DQR system has been postponed to November 23 from November 5, to give more time for Dabawenyos to secure their personal DQR codes. Around 360,000 business establishments and individuals were registered from the start of registration on October 31 until it crashed four days thereafter, according to Duterte.

She said those who have been registered in the system will no longer have to re-register for another DQR code.

The “Safe Davao QR” system, which is made available to residents, non-residents, and establishments, including all private and government offices, has been launched to hasten the contact-tracing system and prohibit non-essential movement of the people within the city in an effort to put the spread of COVID-19 infection under control, Duterte said. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)

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