By Argyll Cyrus Geducos
President Duterte has approved the recommendation of the Inter-agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Diseases to place Albay province and Zamboanga City under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) until May 15, instead of under general community quarantine (GCQ).
In a memorandum from Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, the two areas will be placed under ECQ starting 12 midnight on May 4 until 11:59 p.m. on May 15.
The other nine high-risk areas under the ECQ until May 15 are:
National Capital Region
Central Luzon except for Aurora province
Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, and Quezon) provinces
Meanwhile, a GCQ is imposed on all other areas in the country, provided that minimum health standards are achieved and continuously observed in these areas.
The IATF may lift the GCQ in low-risk areas after May 15, provided that there will be no deterioration in their risk level.
Roque explained that under President Duterte’s Executive Order (EO)112, provincial governors can place component cities and municipalities under ECQ following the approval of the local IATF. The same applies to mayors of highly urbanized cities if they want to place certain barangays under ECQ.
However, if a governor wants to place the entire province under ECQ, it needs to have the approval of the central IATF.
In his EO, President Duterte said the decision was made based on the trends on the COVID-19 epidemiological curve; local government units’ health systems capacity; and economic, social, and security considerations.