Villar backs travel ban to stop nCoV-carriers from ‘sowing terror’ | Inquirer News
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Villar backs travel ban to stop nCoV-carriers from ‘sowing terror’

/ 02:42 PM January 31, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — After a Chinese woman sickened with the novel coronavirus “sowed terror” in the country, Senator Cynthia Villar said she would support calls for the government to bar travelers from China.

Villar said the ban would be the best option unless the government could put in place measures to determine whether a person is a virus-carrier.

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“Kung meron kang way to determine if they are a virus-carrier, okay yun na papasukin mo sila, e may way ba tayo? Wala naman tayong way to determine if they are a carrier tulad nitong babaeng ito na pumasok at pumunta sa Cebu at Dumaguete, naghasik siya ng lagim doon,” Villar told reporters in an interview on Friday.

(If you have a way to determine whether or not travelers from China are virus-carriers, then we could still allow them to enter. But do we have it? We don’t have a way to determine if they are a carrier…so it’s no wonder why this woman was able to enter Cebu and traveled to Dumaguete where she sowed terror there.)

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“E kasi wala naman tayong way, wala yatang test na can determine if you are a carrier or not, kung walang test na ganun, e di pagbawal ang pagpasok?” she added.

(If we don’t have a way to find out. I don’t think there’s a test that can determine if you are a carrier or not. If we don’t have a test like that, we should deny them entry.)

Barring visitors from China, Villar said, should be an option if the Department of Health (DOH) fails to stop the spread of the virus.

“Nasa Department of Health (DOH) yon kung ano ang kaya nila at hindi nila kaya. Kung hindi nila kayang i-stop yon, e di ipagbawal na lang, ‘di ba?” she said.

(It’s up to the Department of Health if they can do that and what they cannot do. If they can’t stop it, we should deny these travelers entry, right?)

The DOH has already stepped up the monitoring of the Philippines’ ports, with personnel of the Bureau of Quarantine stationed there to screen travelers coming into the country.

On Thursday, the DOH confirmed the first case of novel coronavirus in the Philippines.

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Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said a 38-year-old Chinese woman, who arrived in the Philippines via a flight from Hong Kong last week, tested positive for novel coronavirus, which first broke out in the capital city of Wuhan in Hubei province.

President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered a temporary ban on Chinese nationals from Hubei province and from other parts of China where the novel coronavirus outbreak has been reported.

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TAGS: Chinese woman, Nation, News, novel coronavirus, Senator Cynthia Villar, travel ban
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