Metro Manila will return to lockdown mode from August 6 to 20, with a period of additional restrictions the week before, to prepare for a possible surge in COVID-19 cases due to the Delta variant.
This was announced by Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque on Friday, July 30, in a televised address.
The schedule of new restrictions is as follows:
ECQ means that only essential establishments and industries will be allowed to operate. Hospitals, groceries, courier and delivery services, certain manufacturing firms, business process outsourcing will remain fully operational.
Banks; veterinarian clinics; telecommunications; dental, optometry, and other medical clinics; power and energy; internet services; water and sanitation services; teachers; certain legal services can operate with a skeletal workforce. Public transportation will be suspended. However, Roque said it's possible for the transportation department to allow limited use of public transportation.
Read all about ECQ in the Omnibus Guidelines for the Implementation of Community Quarantine (starting at page 4).
The stricter GCQ period triggers the following additional restrictions:
Roque said the decision to go back to lockdown was "painful," but had to be done due to the more transmissible nature of the feared Delta variant. Local transmission of the variant was confirmed last July 22.
Pia Ranada covers the Office of the President and Bangsamoro regional issues for Rappler. While helping out with desk duties, she also watches the environment sector and the local government of Quezon City. For tips or story suggestions, you can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.