Palace: Total lockdown ‘fake news’ but police preparing to implement stricter measures

Published April 19, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Argyll Cyrus Geducos

Malacañang denied reports that the country will be placed under a total lockdown but said law enforcers are preparing to impose stricter quarantine measures to protect the people and prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque (via PCOO / MANILA BULLETIN)
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque (via PCOO / MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)

Presidential spokesman Harry Roque made the statement after new reports claiming that President Duterte will declare a total lockdown. The said message being spread through social media chats claimed that the information came from the media and the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).

In a text message, Roque referred to the message as “fake news.”

He, however, said that the police are preparing for the strict implementation of the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).

“That’s to implement what PRRD said,” he said in another text message.

“Take PRRD literally pls,” he added.

Due to the rise in the number of quarantine violators, President Duterte warned the public last week that there will be a military takeover in the implementation of quarantine restrictions if the people continue to misbehave.

“I am just asking for your disiplina, konti. Kasi pag ayaw ninyo, ayaw ninyong maniwala, mag take order ang military pati ang pulis (I am just asking you to be more disciplined because if not, believe me, the police and the military will take over),” he said in a public address on April 16.

“I am ordering them now to be ready. Ang pulis pati ang military ang mag enforce sa social distance at ‘yang curfew. Sila na (The police and the military will be enforcing social distancing and the curfew. They would take charge),” he added.

Meanwhile, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles denied a report saying he told select businessmen in a briefing that President Duterte was leaning to extend the ECQ until mid-May.

“Naku, napakalayo sa katotohanan (That is far from the truth). This is totally false, totally untrue, totally fake,” he said.

“So huwag na po nating patulan iyan (Let’s not entertain that). So fake, false, untrue, totally, totally,” he added. (Argyll Cyrus B. Geducos)