Mayor Sara fears downgrade to MGCQ may lead to spike in Davao City COVID cases

Published February 25, 2021, 3:13 PM

by Antonio Colina IV

DAVAO CITY – Mayor Sara Duterte remains apprehensive about downgrading the quarantine status of Davao City from general community quarantine (GCQ) to modified GCQ (MGCQ), saying that bringing COVID-19 cases down in the previous months was not easy.

Mayor Sara Duterte (Facebook / MANILA BULLETIN)

Duterte recalled that efforts to manage the COVID-19 surge took three months before the city finally saw a downtrend in the number of COVID-19 cases starting early this month.

“Our surge started in October last year and it went on from November, to December, to January, and it is only now that our cases are going down. So, if we were to base it on history, we know what’s going to be the effect of MGCQ,” she said.

She added that the latest quarantine classification will be decided by the COVID-19 Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID), subject to appeal by the local government.

But should the task force decide to de-escalate the city’s quarantine status, the lady mayor said she is anticipating that the city will experience again a surge as it did when it was placed under MGCQ from July 1 until Nov. 19, 2020.

The city was placed under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) from April 4 to May 15 and GCQ from May 16 until June 30. It was reverted to GCQ on Nov. 20 after seeing a spike in COVID-19 cases.

President Duterte disapproved of the proposal to place the entire country under a less restrictive MGCQ, pending the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccination.

Davao City Health Office (CHO) acting head Dr. Ashley Lopez said the local government of Davao is eyeing to bring down the new daily COVID-19 cases in the city to single-digit growth after health authorities here have seen a decreasing number of confirmed cases starting Feb. 3, which marked the end of the post-holiday surge.