Rizal provincial gov’t thumbs down motorcades for VP Leni, Mayor Sara due to MECQ

The Rizal provincial government announced on Sunday that motorcade, a form of mass gathering, is prohibited in the province as the locality is still under the Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine (MECQ).

The local government made the announcement after turning down the requests of groups supporting Vice President Leni Robredo and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte for the conduct of their respective motorcades in some parts of the province.

In a post on its Facebook page, the provincial government reminds organizers of motorcades, either private or public, that such activities are still not allowed as the Inter Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) has extended the MECQ classification in the province from Oct. 16 until Oct. 31.

Earlier organizers of three groups -- Sarah! Run!, SARA ALL, and LabanLeni2022 -- informed the provincial government of their intention to hold motorcades in the province.

In a letter dated Oct. 15, Provincial Administrator Joseph Ceñidoza told the organizer of the planned pro-Robredo motorcade in Antipolo City, Taytay, Angono, Binangonan, and Cainta supposedly on Oct. 17 cannot be considered at this time due to quarantine restrictions.

“Under the present community quarantine status, the Province of Rizal is under Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine. We are all aware that there are still a number of COVID-19 cases in the Province of Rizal including the ill effects of the existence of Delta Variant and other Covid variants in the country and all of us are united in curbing the spread of the virus. In this regard, and pursuant to the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID), and for the safety and protection of everybody, mass gatherings are not allowed and the said activity cannot be considered during this time of pandemic,” part of the letter signed by Ceñidoza read.

The Facebook page of Lalawigan ng Rizal also posted another letter dated Sept. 30 and signed by Ceñidoza, declining the request of the group, Sara All Philippines2022, for the conduct of the “We Want Sara Motorcade”, which was supposed to be held on Oct. 3 in different towns in Rizal.

The IATF has extended the MECQ quarantine classification in the province of Rizal and two other areas in Southern Tagalog Region -- Cavite and Laguna -- until Oct. 31.