By Chito Chavez
Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año explained on Tuesday the total lockdown under the enhanced community quarantine being implemented in Luzon is a drastic move meant to control the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
This lockdown is absolutely necessary, according to Año, to limit people movement and maintain social distancing to avoid the transfer of the virus from one person to another.
Despite the lockdown, the Department of Health (DOH) reported 45 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday afternoon (March 17), raising the number of confirmed cases to 187.
The soaring number of cases has sowed chaos and public fear despite the government’s assurance that there should be no cause for panic.
In the total lockdown, Año said only health workers, bank employees, media personalities, and food delivery workers are exempted from the directive.
On Monday night, President Duterte declared an enhanced community quarantine in Luzon to stop the further spread of COVID-19.
The President also noted that companies that still require their employees to report for work, even if they are not exempted from the enhanced quarantine, must be shut and stripped of their business permits.
Año said public transportation vehicles were also banned from plying their routes to minimize public movement.
He added that the companies whose workers are exempted from the enhanced quarantine should provide them with transportation.