DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 23 March) – Forty-three persons, including barangay officials here, who left for Manila last March 17 for the “Run, Sara, Run” caravan in Metro Manila will be placed on a 14-day quarantine upon their return to the city, Mayor Sara Duterte said.
Duterte said during her program over Davao City Disaster Radio (DCDR 87.5) Monday that she tried to convince the local convenors to call off their caravan because of the ongoing COVID-19 surge in the capital.
She said they might contract COVID-19 and spread the infection here.
Health authorities detected an increasing number of cases of the South African and UK variants of the virus in the National Capital Region and Cebu, including the latest variant called “P-3” that was first detected in the Philippines.
“I told them to stop the caravan because it is very dangerous for them and for the people of Davao because they can possibly become the carriers of the COVID-19 virus when they return here, and yet they still went ahead,” Duterte said.
After being not on speaking terms with the caravan conveners, Duterte said she reached out to one of them just over the weekend to ask how they were doing in Manila and promised to look for support for their stay there and travel back to the city.
“I cannot bear to see them there because we don’t know if they still have money for their food and fuel. So, I will try to find support for you and please note that you will be quarantined for 14 days… to protect the Dabawenyos because of what you’ve done as well as to teach you a lesson, so that you will no longer go out of the city. Otherwise, you will be quarantined again for another 14 days,” she said.
The mayor said a facility has been readied to serve as a quarantine facility for the caravan participants comprising former and incumbent barangay chairs, barangay councilors, and their relatives.
“No one would listen to me when it comes to ‘Run, Sara, Run.’ If you don’t talk to them, it is as if nothing happens. But when you finally talk to them and reprimand them, they will only tell you ‘peace’,” she said.
In a report by the Philippine News Agency, campaign convenor Barangay 23-C chairman Alimoden Usman said they staged the activity to call on the mayor to join the presidential race next year, describing her as the only person who can continue the fight of her father, President Rodrigo Duterte, against insurgency and maintain peace and order in the country.
The mayor has repeatedly said she has not changed her mind about not running for the country’s highest post next year. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)