Iloilo City

Iloilo City, province to follow IATF order on cemetery closure during UNDAS

Joseph B.A. Marzan
Iloilo City, province to follow IATF order on cemetery closure during UNDAS

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Iloilo City Mayor Jerry Treñas, who initially allowed vaccinated residents to go to cemeteries during Undas, says they decided to align their protocols with the national government's coronavirus task force

Iloilo City Mayor Jerry Treñas and Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor Jr. said on Wednesday, October 20, that they would follow the order of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) to close  cemeteries and similar places from October 29 to November 2.

Treñas told Rappler via Viber on Wednesday, October 20 that the city’s COVID-19 team ultimately decided to follow the IATF directive.

This comes less than 24 hours after Treñas issued Executive Order No. 129, which would have allowed people who have been partially or fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to go to cemeteries, colombaria, and similar facilities from October 31 to November 2.

“In our meeting, we decided to align our protocols with the national IATF for the Undas. It will be very difficult if everyone will have different protocols,” Treñas said.

Defensor said the same thing to media at the capitol.

Had there been no pronouncements from the IATF, the governor said he would refer to Executive Order No. 575, which provides the general community quarantine (GCQ) rules of the province.

Section 12(4) of EO No. 575 states that visits to memorial parks, cemeteries, and columbaria should be limited to 10 persons per group, and not exceeding 30% of the venue capacity.

“We are waiting for the issuance from the national government to close down cemeteries from October 29 to November 2. We are waiting for the resolution, but I think that will happen [closure of cemeteries]. When it comes, we will issue the executive order to cascade to our municipalities,” Defensor said.

Prior to the IATF directive, Treñas issued EO 129 that was supposed to provide guidelines to vaccinated residents who wish to go to public and private cemeteries and similar facilities in Iloilo City from October 31 to November 2. – Rappler.com

Joseph B.A. Marzan is a Visayas-based journalist and an awardee of the Aries Rufo Journalism Felowship.