LIST: Some gov’t offices, courts temporarily close for disinfection
MANILA, Philippines — Amid the recent surge of COVID-19 cases in the country, several government offices and court branches were ordered closed for disinfection.
Among these offices were:
- Senate (March 16)
- Bureau of Immigration (BI) Main building in Intramuros, Manila (March 15 to 16)
- National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Central Office (March 15 to19)
- Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) Head Office in Pasay (March 16 to 19)
- GSIS Quezon City Branch Office (March 16 to 19)
- Commission on Elections (Comelec) Main Office and other offices in Intramuros, Manila (March 11 to 24)
- Comelec Office of the Regional Election Director of National Capital Region (NCR), Region IV-A, and Region IV-B (March 11 to 24)
- Office of Civil Defense – Central (March 15 to 19)
- Social Security System (SSS) San Francisco Del Monte Branch (March 16)
- Supreme Court (March 14 to 16)
- Antipolo City, RTC Branches 17, 71 to 74, and 137 to 140, and the OCC (March 16)
Senate President Vicente Sotto III announced that the Senate will be in “complete lockdown” on Tuesday after an employee who reported for work on Monday tested positive for COVID-19.
“He knew that his wife was positive, he attended the office this morning and they found out that he was not feeling well. They brought him to the hospital, he tested COVID-19 positive,” said Sotto.
“Therefore, the entire Bills and Index Office is now under quarantine and so with that, we cannot do any amendments, any other bills to take up until the full sanitation is done at least tomorrow. From tonight until tomorrow, there cannot be any sessions,” he added.
In an advisory on Monday, BI said transactions at the Bureau’s main office are temporarily suspended due to an order from Commissioner Jaime Morente for a “thorough sanitation and disinfection” of the entire building and its premises.
Officials and employees were directed to stay home, “although a skeletal force of personnel will still be on duty to man the agency’s 24/7 offices rendering critical support services as well as to provide security.”
Still, BI assured that the transacting public can still conduct business at other offices in Metro Manila, including the BI SM North Satellite Office and the BI SM Aura Satellite Office.
Meanwhile, those with confirmed schedules via the bureau’s online appointment system for Monday and Tuesday were advised to reschedule their appointments.
PRESS RELEASE15 March 2021BI main bldg. closes for 2-day disinfection Intramuros, MANILA—The Bureau of Immigration…ADVERTISEMENT
NEDA, on the other hand, announced on Monday its week-long work from home adjustment for its Central Office staff who are performing non-critical services.
According to the agency, the decision was a “preventive measure” due to the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in the Metro.
ADVISORY: NEDA Central Office staff performing non-critical services are advised to work from home this week as…
While the GSIS announced the temporary closure of its Pasay and QC branch on Tuesday, the state-run social insurance institution clarified that members and pensioners can still transact through their online services.
Pansamantalang sarado sa publiko ang GSIS Head Office sa Pasay at GSIS Quezon City Branch Office hanggang March 19, 2021. Pero tuloy pa din po ang ating online services para sa members at pensioners.
Comelec has likewise temporarily closed its offices to prevent the further spread of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
“We wish to assure the public, however, that work remains unhampered. Preparations for the Palawan Plebiscite as well as the 2022 National and Local Elections are underway and will continue to be undertaken by the officials and employees responsible,” said Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez in a press release last week.
Meanwhile, based on a memorandum issued on Sunday, work in the SC will be suspended until Tuesday as ordered by Chief Justice Diosdado M. Peralta to give time for the disinfection of different buildings and offices.
Chief Justice Diosdado M. Peralta extends work suspension in the Supreme Court until March 16, 2021 as the different buildings and offices continue to be disinfected; Oral Arguments for G.R. No. 252578, et al. on March 16, 2021 is suspended. pic.twitter.com/jPVv93f1BK
— Philippine Supreme Court Public Information Office (@SCPh_PIO) March 14, 2021
The Philippine Supreme Court Public Information Office also posted on Twitter the temporary closure of different court branches.
The Department of Health on Monday reported record-high COVID-19 infections for this year with a total of 5,404 new cases. This brings the country’s total caseload to 626,893.
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