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3月13日のまにら新聞から

Duterte declares "community quarantine'; restricts movement to and from Metro Manila due to COVID-19 outbreak

[ 700 words|2020.3.13|英字 (English) ]

President Rodrigo Duterte declared on Thursday night Code Red Sublevel 2, imposing "community quarantine" in the entire National Capital Region, and ordered suspension of the land, air, and sea domestic travels to and from Metro Manila for a month until April 14 due to coronavirus disease outbreak.

Emerging from a meeting with the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Disease and security forces in Malacanang, Duterte said he approved the resolution made by the task force, but he would also issue an executive order relative to it.

He announced that the suspension of classes in all levels in the National Capital Region is extended until April 12.

Duterte said the police and the military would be deployed to enforce the IATF resolution, which will take effect on March 15. But he was quick to say that what the government would be implementing is not martial law.

"I would need their (military and police) help to carry on with governance. I need them not to fight with you guys. Don't be afraid of the soldiers...do not try to play with martial law," he said in his public address.

Duterte said a community quarantine is imposed in the entire Metro Manila while the local government in other areas could also implement their respective "localized community quarantine."

"Land, domestic air, and domestic sea travel to and from Metro Manila shall be suspended beginning 15 March 2020 and to end on April 14, 2020 subject to daily review of the Inter-Agency Task Force," Duterte said.

In a radio interview, Local Government Secretary Eduardo Ano refused to call the suspension of domestic travels to "total lockdown."

"We can't say that it's a total lockdown. We're just restricting movements going in and out Metro Manila," he said.

While the government is encouraging work from home, he clarified that workers in Metro Manila but living outside the metropolis could still enter provided that they have to show their company IDs.

He said checkpoints would be installed in all the entry and exit points in Metro Manila.

Public transportation, such as the provincial buses, could still be allowed subject to check by the police and the military, he said.

Duterte said public transportation in Metro Manila such as the Light Rail Transit, Metro Rail Transit, and the Philippine National Railways shall continue operating, provided that the Department of Transportation shall issue guidelines to ensure social distancing in said public transports.

He said mass gatherings, defined as planned or spontaneous event where the number of people attending could strain the planning and response resources of the community hosting the event, shall also be prohibited.

Duterte also said work in the executive branch shall be suspended without prejudice to the formation of skeletal workforces by government agencies in order to maintain the unimpeded delivery of services to the public.

But Duterte said health and emergency frontline services shall continue in full operation.

He also encouraged the legislative branch and the judiciary to adopt the same policy.

Duterte also urged the private sector to come up with flexible working hours.

He said the Department of Labor and Employment and the Department of Trade and Industry shall issue guidelines to safeguard the welfare of workers.

All manufacturing, retail, and service establishments were also advise to remain in operation during the period, he said, but reminded to maintain the social distancing measures.

Duterte said Balik-manggagawa overseas Filipino workers shall be allowed to travel to mainland China, except to Hubei province, upon execution of a declaration signifying their knowledge and understanding of the risks involved and provided that health advisory pamphlet shall be handed out to the OFWs upon departure.

Entry travel restrictions shall be imposed upon those traveling from countries with localized COVID-19 transmissions, except for Filipino citizens including their foreign spouse and children, if any, holders of permanent resident visa, and holders of 9(e) diplomat visas issued by the Philippine government, he added.

Duterte said he received a letter from Chinese President Xi Jinping expressing his government's willingness to assist the Philippines in the event the situation worsens.

Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles, in a radio interview, said another meeting of the task force would be held Friday to threshout the guidelines. Celerina Monte/DMS