Some NCR mayors say ready for Alert Level 2
MANILA, Philippines — Some Metro Manila mayors on Thursday said that they are prepared should the national government further relax the capital region’s status to Alert Level 2 in November.
Manila City Mayor Isko Moreno, Muntinlupa City Mayor Jaime Fresnedi, and Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto expressed readiness for the possible shift from Alert Level 3 to 2 in the National Capital Region (NCR).
“As far as [M]anila is [concerned], we are ready to adapt. We want [businesses] to flourish or at least to survive to create more job opportunities for our people. But at the same time, we need to [e]scalate the policy on vaccination for kids 12 to 17 [years] old to be made available for all, ASAP (as soon as possible),” Moreno told INQUIRER.net in a message.
For his part, Fresnedi said that his city is prepared for the eventuality that the alert level is lowered in the capital region.
“[It’s] up to IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases) but Muntinlupa is ready and prepared to handle whatever alert [level] is decided by the President [Rodrigo Duterte],” he said.
Sotto, meantime, said that he is leaving the verdict on the alert status to the IATF but the local government will continue its preparations.
“[T]he City Govt of Pasig will continue to prepare for every possibility, but we defer to the wisdom of the experts and the IATF for the alert level,” Sotto said.
Navotas City Mayor Toby Tiangco, meanwhile, would be pleased with the easing of status if it is aligned with NCR’s COVID-19 figures.
“[W]e would be very happy if the data would show that NCR can be downgraded to Level 2,” Tiangco said.
For his part, San Juan City Mayor Francis Zamora likewise backed relaxing the alert level if COVID-19 infections continue to dip.
“I express my support for the downgrading of our quarantine status to Alert Level 2 if we will continue to see a decline in the number of active cases,” he said in a Facebook post.
Department of Interior and Local Government Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya on Wednesday said that the agency and Metro Manila mayors are ready should the status be relaxed, noting the continuous decline in COVID-19 cases and ramped-up vaccination.
Based on IATF guidelines, businesses and establishments allowed to operate under Alert Level 3 must have a 30-percent venue capacity while 50 percent for those under Alert Level 2.