Modified lockdown shaping up as Duterte decides ECQ's fate on April 23 | Inquirer News

Modified lockdown shaping up as Duterte decides ECQ’s fate on April 23

/ 06:51 PM April 21, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte will decide on the fate of the Luzon-wide lockdown by the end of the week, his long-time aide said Tuesday as he hinted of a possible modified quarantine.

“Ngayon po ay pinag-aaralang mabuti at ngayong Huwebes (April 23) magdedesisyon ang ating Pangulo,” Senator Christopher “Bong” Go said in an interview on dzMM.

(It’s being studied carefully, and on Thursday the President will make a decision.)


The senator, who was present during Dutere’s meeting with health experts Monday night, said a modified quarantine would likely to be enforced.


“Dina-digest muna ng pangulo, pinagiisipan niya…Walang pulitika kahit na yung mga former secretaries ng iba’t-ibang administrasyon ay nandodoon po at ilang experts po sa infectious diseases,” Go said.

(The President is still digesting the information given to him, he’s taking it into consideration…The meeting was not tainted with any political color even if those present were former secretaries of different administrations; infectious disease experts were also present).

“Pinakinggan talaga ng ating Pangulo para makapagdesisyon po siya nang maayos kung dapat bang i-extend ang enhanced community quarantine or dapat na bang i-lift po ito. Sa NCR (National Capital Region) or sa labas po ng NCR, kung dapat na bang luwagan nang konti pero hindi ibig sabihin totally luluwagan po ito. Kung saka-sakali, modified quarantine lang po ito,” he added.

(The President really listened to their insights so that he can make a calculated decision on whether or not to extend the enhanced community quarantine or lift it. If quarantine measures in areas inside NCR and outside NCR should be eased…If ever, a modified quarantine would be enforced.)

With the President making his decision on April 23, around a week before the Luzon quarantine ends, Go said the public would have enough time to prepare for whatever changes might be implemented.

The senator, chair of the Senate health committee, said one of the considerations the IATF was studying involved the relaxation of quarantine measures in areas with lower or no cases of COVID-19.


He added that should the ECQ be extended in Metro Manila, where most COVID-19 cases have been recorded, quarantine measures may be stricter.

“Kung sakaling ma-extend ang ECQ sa Metro Manila maaaring higpitan pa ito dahil ‘di kakayanin ng healthcare system kung tataas pa ito while waiting po sa vaccine,” he said.

(Should the ECQ be extended in Metro Manila, it may be more resolute because our health care would not be able to handle it if the number of cases continues to increase.)

According to Go, the President would again convene a meeting with some members of the country’s COVID-19 task force.

“Ipupulong nya muli ang iilang miyembro members ng IATF para makapagdesisyon ang Pangulo, para bigyan pa ng sapat na panahon ang ating mga kababayan para po mag-adjust, ibig kong sabihin, meron pa isang linggo para (makapaghanda) sa maaaring modified quarantine,” he said.

(He would meet with some IATF members to make his decision (on Thursday), and to also give the public enough time to adjust, what I mean is they have one week to prepare for a possible modified quarantine.)

Earlier, Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) spokesperson Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said the chief executive “needs more time” to decide whether or not to extend the Luzon-wide quarantine, which is scheduled for lifting on April 30.

To date, Philippine health officials have so far confirmed 6,599 COVID-19 cases in the country.

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Of these cases, 437 have died while 654 patients have recovered.

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TAGS: COVID-19, lockdown, Nation, News, Rodrigo Duterte

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