BAGUIO, Philippines – Ilocos Sur and La Union were placed under community quarantine even if no confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been recorded in the provinces.
Ilocos Sur Governor Ryan Luis Singson signed Executive Order (EO) No. 14, placing the province under community quarantine starting March 15 until April 14.
A province-wide curfew from 8 pm to 4 am was also imposed.
Ilocos Norte was the first province to impose a community quarantine in the Ilocos Region.
“Movement of residents of Ilocos Sur shall be limited to going outside their respective abodes for the purpose of accessing necessities and work only within the province,” the EO said.
“Going to neighboring provinces for work purposes, however, shall be allowed provided the same is not a COVID-19 affected area.”
“Non-residents who are working in Ilocos Sur shall be allowed to enter the province once provided they are not COVID-19 infected or residents of a COVID-19 affected area and shall undergo the screening protocols set forth before entry,” the EO also read.
Frontliners like medical personnel and police are exempted. No stopovers are allowed for travelers going to Ilocos Norte, for example.
“No transfer and/or referral of patient/s coming from neighboring provinces to any health facility in the province of Ilocos Sur shall be allowed during the entire community quarantine period,” it added.
Big gatherings will also be suspended. In this regard, Ilocos Sur 2nd District Representative Kristine Meehan and National Artist Ryan Cayabyab decided to postpone the 2nd Candon Music Festival indefinitely.
La Union Governor Emmanuel Ortega III also signed EO 12, placing the province under community quarantine from March 16 to April 12.
This includes the imposition of a province-wide curfew from 10 pm to 5 pm. An alcohol ban was also set during the period.
“Movement to and from La Union shall be restricted during the community quarantine period. Constituents of La Union shall only be limited to going out of their homes only when necessary. Tourist destinations are hereby closed temporarily during said period.”
As of Monday, March 16, Ilocos Sur and La Union have not recorded confirmed cases of the COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. A confirmed case from Cordillera, however, is now in a La Union hospital.
President Rodrigo Duterte had declared a state of public health emergency on March 9, after confirmed cases of the novel coroanvirus began spiking on March 8.
As of this posting, the Philippines has at least 140 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus, with 12 deaths. The virus has infected over 163,000 people and killed more than 6,000 in over 141 countries. – Rappler.com
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