Metro Manila mayors back to drawing board as COVID-19 cases rise anew

Published March 6, 2021, 4:38 PM

by Betheena Kae Unite

Metro Manila mayors will once again go back to the drawing board to come up with a better policy to address the resurgence of high cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) infection.


This after active cases in Metro Manila almost doubled in the span of 11 days.

“Eleven days ago, our active cases in Metro Manila is at 3,767 but after just 11 days, as of March 5, it grew to 6,479. Talagang nakakagulat parang isang idlip dumami kaagad (It’s really shocking that in just a blink of an eye, the cases ballooned),” Metropolitan Manila Development Authority Charmain Benjamin Abalos said during a radio interview on Saturday, March 6.

Abalos said Metro Manila mayors will meet with officials from the Department of Health (DOH) at 5 p.m. Saturday to discuss whether granular lockdowns or stricter age restriction must be implemented to stop the surge of COVID-19 cases.

“Right now, granular lockdown are already enforced in some areas like Pasay and Navotas but it needs to be intensified. Later at 5 p.m., mayors will meet with the DOH to assess the situation to determine if we also need to implement stricter age restriction in public places,” Abalos said in Filipino. He further said that they need to look into the data from the DOH to “review if the mayors need to do more and where they must concentrate.”

Among the data they need to review, Abalos explained, are the number of infected teens and the number of reinfection among this age group, which will be crucial in considering a stricter age restriction.

“Kailangan ma-breakdown yung active cases para kumbaga alam mo yung sandata mo, e (We need a breakdown of the data of active cases because we need to at least know what weapon to use). Data would really count in” he said.

At present, quarantine facilities under the Oplan Kalinga reached 89 percent occupancy rate, Abalos revealed, prompting them to look for more facilities outside Metro Manila in order to handle more cases by the time the occupancy within Metro Manila reached its limit.

The chairman reiterated that practicing minimum health standards and maintaining self-discipline in following these protocols remain to be the key in preventing the transmission of the dreaded disease, especially now that we are reaching the latter phase of the pandemic.

“Kumbaga sa basketball, nasa fourth quarter na tayo e (If we are in a basketball game, we are already in the fourth quarter),” he said.