Metro Manila’s shift to a two-week strict lockdown turned out to be the “right move” following the alarming surge of active coronavirus cases Friday, according to Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion.
The country recorded 10,623 new cases of infections Friday, bringing the total to 1,638,345. It is reportedly the highest single-day number since April 17 when authorities reported over 11,100 infections.
“We made the right move,” Concepcion said in a statement about the two-week enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in Metro Manila. “We heeded the advice of OCTA Research for the private sector to consider locking down. I am glad we did,” he added.
Concepcion also cited the Metro Manila mayors for joining the private sector in recognizing the situation on the ground. “We thank MMDA chair Abalos for his persistence and Health Secretary Francisco Duque and the rest of the IATF,” he added.
To stem the spread of the contagious Delta variant, Metro Manila went into a hard lockdown Friday, August 6, forcing millions of residents to stay home except for going to work and getting food and essential goods and services. The ECQ measures, that include limited operations of businesses and public transport, travel restrictions, ban on large gatherings, and curfew, will remain in effect until August 20, 2021.
Concepcion, meantime, is hopeful the ECQ in Metro Manila will effectively contain the coronavirus case spike and spell the end of further lockdowns.
According to Concepcion, the business sector sector is prepared to cooperate with the government to make sure the NCR-wide lockdown will work. The vaccination initiated by the private sector for its employees will be accelerated during this period for the protection of the health of the people and the economy, he added.
“We will now work closely with MMDA (Metro Manila Development Authority) chair and mayors and the IATF (Inter Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases) to make sure we succeed as we would like to see an end to lockdowns,” Concepcion said.
“But that will rely on our ability to vaccinate with great speed. We hope those unvaccinated see the urgency to protect themselves and save our economy,” he added.