BACOLOD CITY, Philippines – Negros Occidental will be placed under enhanced community quarantine beginning Monday, March 30, to prevent the spread of novel coronavirus disease.
Its capital city, Bacolod, reported its first case of coronavirus on March 20.
Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson signed the executive order on Thursday, March 26, to expand measures to protect its 2.5 million population. After sealing its borders and shutting down terminals and airports, the province will now put it entire population under strict home quarantine.
Movement will limited to accessing basic necessities while provision for food and essential health services will be regulated. There will also be heightened presence of uniformed personnel to make sure the quarantine procedures are followed.
The enhanced community quarantine will be in effect from 12 a.m. on Monday, March 30, until 11:59 p.m. of April 14.
Only private establishments providing basic necessities such as food and medical supplies will remain open.
These private establishments were identified as the following:
- Public markets
- Convenience stores
- Medical clinics
- Drug stores
- Food preparation and delivery services
- Water-refilling stations
- Laundry services
- Money transfer services
- Petroleum, power, energy, water and telecommunications supplies and facilities
- Business process outsourcing establishments, and
- Sugar centrals
- Manufacturing and processing plants of basic food products and medicines
The management of the said establishments were ordered to operate with a skeleton workforce not exceeding 25 percent of the regular workforce.
Operations of all public utility vehicles will also be suspended. These include buses, jeepneys, taxis, V-hire vans, tricycles, e-tricycles, and “trisikads” or pedicabs.
Local government units were ordered to implement the following:
- Direct delivery of food packs and other basic necessities to vulnerable households
- Grant passes to one person per household (Only those with passes will be allowed to go out to buy food, medicines, and other basic necessities. They may use their own vehicles.)
- Devise and implement a point-to-point transportation plan to deliver family representatives to and from markets or stores within the city or municipality
- Grant limited passes to management and employees of essential business that will authorize them to transport products
The people exempted from home quarantine are the following:
- Government employees
- Private medical service providers
- Employees of funeral services, and immediate family of the deceased
- Emergency responders
- Peace and security officers
- Delivery personnel
- Key officials and employees of utilities
- Media personnel
- Private individuals, one per household
- Congressmen with their chief of staff
- Court judges, attorneys, and their skeletal staff
- Farm workers and management
- Sugar, rice, corn, and flour mill employees and management
- Management, drivers and helper of hauling services
The governor said the local government units must provide assistance to their constituents for the duration of the enhanced community quarantine. – Rappler.com