Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Benjamin “Benhur” Abalos Jr. prodded all local government units (LGUs) on Friday, August 12, to strictly enforce appropriate measures to combat the anticipated rise of Covid-19 cases in the country.
He made the call after the Department of Health (DOH) projected that over 10,600 daily Covid-19 cases will affect the National Capital Region (NCR) by October.
Abalos insisted that the DOH’s projection of the rise in Covid-19 cases “is a clear warning that all LGUs should take seriously.”
He stressed that the LGUs must not relax their Covid-19 measures and stand guard on cases in their respective localities to mitigate the possibility of a surge in the coming months.
“Kami po ay nananawagan sa ating LGUs na bantayang mabuti ang mga kaso ng COVID sa kanilang nasasakupan (We are calling on the LGUs to monitor the Covid-19 cases in their respective turfs). We are still in a pandemic and we count on our local officials to lead this war especially in the coming months where alarming numbers of Covid-19 cases are projected,” Abalos said.
He also rallied the LGUs to fortify their measures against the virus following the DOH’s recent projection of the increase in Covid-19 cases in Metro Manila by October, which can even extend to other parts of the country until the end of the year.
As of August 11, the NCR has the most number of Covid-19 cases in all of the country’s regions with 15,804 new cases in the last 14 days followed by CALABARZON with 10,049; Central Luzon with 5,102 and Western Visayas with 2,760 cases.
The DOH attributed the projected number to the low administration of booster doses, low compliance to prescribed health and safety protocols, increase in human mobility, and fast transmission of the Omicron sub-variants.
“I urge all of you to support the government’s vaccination efforts such as PinasLakas. Vaccines have carried us through the murk of the pandemic,’’ he added.
“PinasLakas” is a DOH campaign that aims to immunize 23.8 million or at least 50 percent of the eligible population with Covid-19 booster shot within the first 100 days of the Marcos administration.
The DILG Secretary also urged all the LGUs to ensure that they are not lenient in enforcing minimum public health standards (MPHS) and are proactive in their booster shot and vaccination drives.
“We cannot let our guards down. The projected number of cases in NCR is a clear sign for all LGUs in the country to step up their campaign because COVID-19 can again trickle to your own backyards. We must work collectively para matuldukan na ang pandemya ito,” Abalos said.