16 Lanao Sur town villages locked down as COVID-19 cases rise

COTABATO CITY – A total of 16 out of the 26 villages in Wao, Lanao del Sur have been placed under granular lockdown Sunday, September 5, due to the rising cases of coronavirus and the deaths of three persons in a single day.

Francis Garcia, Wao municipal disaster risk reduction and management officer, said the rising number of cases the past few days compelled the town’s task force to recommend a granular lockdown.

“On Sunday, three persons who tested positive for COVID-19 have died,” Garcia said in a radio interview here Monday.

IMMEDIATE BURIAL. The bodies of patients who died of COVID-19 were buried on Sunday (Sept. 5, 2021) in Wao, Lanao del Sur. Due to the rising number of coronavirus cases in the town, 16 of its 26 villages have been placed under granular lockdown. (Photo courtesy of Wao BFP/MANILA BULLETIN)

On the same day, he said the provincial inter-agency task force decided to bury one of the three right away while the two were sent to Cagayan de Oro City for cremation.

However, the bodies were sent back home as the crematorium’s operation there was temporarily stopped due to complaints from residents. Garcia said the two were buried Sunday afternoon.

He said the town's task force was "alarmed" about the three deaths in a single day, the most number recorded in the area.

Wao has more than 200 active COVID-19 cases and the isolation facility can no longer accept patients due to lack of beds.

Garcia said asymptomatic patients are made to undergo home quarantine.

On Saturday, the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, through its Rapid Emergency Action for Disaster Incidence Center, has distributed food packs and hygiene kits to residents of Wao affected by the granular lockdown.