CEBU CITY – They should have known better.
A dozen doctors were among the more than 100 persons, who were rounded up for breach of quarantine protocols between 11 p.m. Friday and dawn Saturday.
Operatives of the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) conducted “Oplan Bulabog” to ensure that quarantine protocols were being followed, including the 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew, and the prohibition on drinking alcoholic drinks in public places.
Unfortunately, 12 of those arrested were doctors.
They were caught having a drinking session at an establishment in Barangay Banilad after attending a seminar at the Tinago Barangay gym, according to Racquel Arrce, chief of the city’s Prevention, Restoration, Order, and Beautification (PROBE) team.
The erring physicians were eventually released after paying the P500-fine.
Violators who could not afford to pay the fines rendered community service instead.
“No legal charges were filed. This is purely administrative,” said Arce.
Police Lt. Col. Wilbert Parilla, deputy city director for operation of CCPO, said medical workers were considered authorized persons outside residence (APORs), but underscored that their presence outdoors should be justified.
“You cannot just drink in public places just because you’re an APOR. As an APOR, you are only authorized to go outside if it’s part of your work,” said Parilla.
As part of its intensified implementation of quarantine protocols, armored cars from the Central Command were sent to barangays Suba, Pasil and Sawang Calero to prevent public gatherings in line with their fiesta celebrations.
In the past few days, the police and personnel of the City Hall have been strictly monitoring night establishments, hotels and other public places to prevent social gatherings.
These social gatherings have been blamed for the recent spike of new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases in the city.
Last Friday, the city recorded the highest single-day cases for the past few months with 61 new cases.
The city recorded 56 more new cases last Saturday, increasing its active cases to 570.