DAVAO CITY – North Cotabato declared Tuesday, March 17, a “pre-emptive lockdown” in the province.
North Cotabato Governor Nancy Catamco signed Executive Order No. 21 barring the entry of non-residents into any part of the province.
However, those involved in the delivery of basic good and services, medical supplies, those working in the province, and those passing through will still be allowed in.
Those trying to get in for tourism purposes will be stopped, she said.
North Cotabato hosts the Mt. Apo National Park and Asik-Asik Falls, which are both top visited areas in Soccsksargen (Region 12).
There are two cases of persons under investigation (PUI) for the novel coronavirus in Region 12. Both PUI are not from Cotabato.
Catamco also asked all residents of the province with recent trips to Manila or abroad to register with their local health centers and undergo self-quarantine for 14-days.
“All individuals with (COVID-19) symptoms are ordered to report to their respective barangays, municipal and city government units,” she said.
COVID-19 is the illness caused by the coronavirus.
Catamco said under the preemptive lockdown, all establishments – except for markets and stores selling necessities, hospitals, pharmacies, banks, money transfer offices, water refilling stations, agricultural supply, hardware, food delivery services, power, energy and telecommunications – shall temporarily stop operations.
All public transport facilities are told to limit their passenger capacity and to conduct disinfection of units.
Catamco also ordered the police, the military, the Bureau of Fire Protection, medical practitioners, select government officials and employees to be on 24/7 alert status.
She said a 4-day workweek would also be adopted at the provincial capitol so that basic government services would not be disrupted. However, travels of government employees and officials outside of the province had been temporarily banned.
Catamco also ordered government officials to adopt “online transactions and meetings” as alternatives.
She also imposed a provincewide curfew starting 9 pm until 5 am.
As of Tuesday, the Philippines has 187 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 4 recoveries. The Department of Health (DOH) says the total number of fatalities in the country was 14. – Rappler.com
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