'Poblacion girl', 8 others face rap over COVID-19 quarantine breach | Inquirer News
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‘Poblacion girl’, 8 others face rap over COVID-19 quarantine breach

/ 07:48 PM January 04, 2022
Complaint filed vs ‘Poblacion girl’, 8 others for COVID-19 quarantine breach

Facade of the PNP headquarters in Camp Crame. Image from pnp.gov.ph website

MANILA, Philippines — “Poblacion girl” and eight other people have been slapped with a complaint due to her skipping COVID-19 quarantine protocols when she returned to the country from the United States on December 22.

The Philippine National Police’s Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG) formally filed the complaint before the Makati City Prosecutor’s Office on Tuesday against a certain Gwyneth Anne Chua, her parents, a companion, and five employees and officials of the hotel where she was supposed to spend her quarantine days.

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Authorities said they filed the complaint against the nine people as they violated Republic Act No. 11332 or the Mandatory Reporting of Notifiable Diseases and Health Events of Public Health Concern Act.

Specifically, the PNP-CIDG said Chua, her parents, and the five employees and officials of the hotel violated Section 9 (d) of R.A. No. 11332, which says “non-cooperation of persons and entities that should report and/or respond to notifiable diseases or health events of public concern” is a prohibited act.

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It can be recalled that on December 30, 2021, Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat announced to the public about a case involving a returning overseas Filipina who avoided her quarantine in a hotel and even boasted about having connections to be able to do so.

Puyat also said the girl went on to attend a party at Makati City’s Poblacion area. Later on, the girl was found positive for SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, and consequently infected other people she was with during the party.

READ: DOT: Filipina from US with ‘connections’ skipped quarantine, partied in Makati 

On Monday, the PNP-CIDG said its investigation found that Chua checked in at the Berjaya Hotel Makati on December 22 at 11:23 p.m. but was “fetched from the same hotel by her own father with an SUV and drove off” less than 10 minutes later — hence the reason why her parents were included in the case.

Investigators also confirmed the girl’s presence at a restaurant in Makati City on the night of December 23.

“On December 25, 2021, at 9:00 PM, Ms. Chua returned to the hotel assisted by her mother,” the CIDG noted in a statement Monday.

READ: Puyat: Quarantine violator arrested after posting massage session on social media

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Aside from violating the main R.A. 11332, the PNP-CIDG said Chua and the others violated Rule XI Section 1 (g) (iii), (iv) of the law’s Implementing Rules and Regulations.

The country is currently seeing a rapid rise in new COVID-19 cases, forcing the national government to put Metro Manila and three other nearby provinces under Alert Level 3.

READ: NCR under Alert Level 3 from Jan. 3 to Jan. 15 — Palace

As of Tuesday, the country’s active COVID-19 infections swelled to 29,809, after the Department of Health (DOH) reported 5,434 new infections.

READ: PH posts 5,434 new COVID-19 cases; 611 recoveries

The increases came after a relatively low number of daily cases ranging from 300 to 500 with the active case count down to below 10,000 before the holidays.

Some experts believe that the quick growth in COVID-19 infections may have been due to the Omicron variant, which is believed to be more infectious than the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2.

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DOH cites ‘high possibility’ of Omicron variant’s local transmission

Philippines ‘more ready’ to face Omicron variant, says DOH

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TAGS: CIDG, COVID-19 surge, Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, Gwyneth Chua, Makati, makati City Prosecutors Office, Omicron variant, Phil‎ippine National Police, Philippine news updates, PNP‎, Poblacion girl
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